Canada chief medical officer Dr. Mark Aubry was one of the speakers at the extremely successful
first-ever Hockey Canada Concussion Seminar that was held on Saturday November 3 at Scotiabank Place, the
home of the Ottawa Senators.
The session was held in memory of Dr. Tom Pashby a pioneer in safety in hockey not only in Canada but
around the world. He has been inducted into Canada Sports Hall of Fame and is a member of the Order of Canada
for the work he has done.
More than 340 people heard Dr. Aubry, also Chief Medical Officer for the International Ice Hockey
Federation and a physician with the Senators, along with sports medicine specialist Dr. James Kissick and
concussion guru and Think First Canada president Dr. Karen Johnston all speak on the diagnosis, treatment and
return to play protocol. Toronto Maple Leaf psychologist Paul Dennis outlined some of the difficult
self-imposed and peer pressures that face concussed athletes as well as the urgency to return to play created
by parents and coaches.
Dentist Dr. Paul Piccininni, also a member of the IIHF medical committee, spoke on the role of mouthguards
in the prevention of dental injuries and concussions while Dr. Pat Bishop chair of the Canadian Standards
Association committee that certifies hockey equipment explained about certification and said that equipment
must fit properly to protect the player and was explicit that helmets do not necessarily prevent
“I was very impressed with the seminar and equally impressed with the turnout and interest shown by those
in the audience, particularly the trainers,” Dr. Aubry said.
“I was touched,” he said and amazed that more than 150 trainers the first line of defense in safety in hockey
, joined physicians, managers, therapists, coaches and so on who got out of bed to be at the rink before the
early-morning start of 7:45.
“The trainers are the safety people on the benches and cared enough for the players-athletes to attend,”
he said. “The content of the seminar says it all. It revolved around the first two Concussion Statements
developed in Vienna and Prague.” He mentioned they were told of ongoing research that has been done since
then suggesting there may be a third statement in the not to distant future. “The subjects dealt with what we
(as sports medicine physicians and on-ice safety persons) treat on a daily basis on the bench and on the
ice,” he said.
The audience stayed throughout the three hour session with more than half remaining for the hour question
and answer period. The panel, consisting of the above people as well as co-chairs neurosurgeon Dr. Charles
Tator and sports medicine specialist Dr. Howard Winston, answered all. “The questions were most interesting,”
Dr. Aubry said. “Many dealt with everyday issues that really had no simple answers. Again they dealt with
subjects that touched everyone in the room.”
For a report on the event itself, click on
and for more information on the diagnosis, treatment and return to play go to www.hockeycanada.ca, www.thinkfirstcanada.ca or www.drpashby.ca