CARMEL, Ind. (WISH) — It was the fourth quarter of a week four game versus Zionsville. Brebeuf Jesuit quarterback Luke Iffert was fighting for a comeback when he took a blow to the head from a defensive player.
“Everything was a blur,” he said. “I didn’t really know what was going on. Everything was a lot slower.”
His coach pulled him out of the game and he was eventually diagnosed with a concussion.
According to numbers released from the Indiana High School Athletics Association, at least 147 athletes were diagnosed with concussions this school year by late September. Last school year, more than 2,000 concussions across 14 sports were reported to the agency.
After the hit, Iffert got treatment at St. Vincent Sports Performance. He underwent an evaluation in which doctors tested his balance and vision. He took a cognitive test to help doctors to see how his brain was functioning, and he eventually did a series of exercises to make sure he wouldn’t get a headache or become dizzy on game day.
Iffert hit the real field when Dr. Patrick Kersey of St. Vincent said he could.
“If there’s been an injury to the brain, it needs to have its appropriate healing time, and that is regardless of who you play, what you play and when you play,” Kersey said.
The warning signs for concussions are headaches, dizziness, cloudiness and confusion.
“It was pretty scary just knowing that something’s wrong with your head,” Iffert said.
Kersey said there’s no sure way for an athlete to avoid a concussion, but he said staying in good shape and keeping alert on the field can help.