Research in Brief: Concussions in Law Enforcement

A concussion or minor traumatic brain injury (mTBI) is defined as an impact to the head or forceful motion of the head resulting in any of the following: (a) a brief alteration of mental status such as confusion or disorientation, (b) a loss of memory for events immediately before or after the injury, or (c) brief loss of consciousness.1 Currently, data do not exist that look specifically at the frequency of concussions in law enforcement officers. However, as a consequence of both intentional assaults and accidental blunt trauma, many officers might sustain concussions in the line of duty. The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of self-reported concussions among sworn officers of the Rochester (Minnesota) Police Department and personnel of the Olmsted County (Minnesota) Sheriff’s Office.