The King-Devick Test is designed to assess saccadic eye movements, measuring the speed of rapid number naming as well as errors made by the athlete, with the goal of detecting impairments of eye movement, attention, and language as well as impairments in other areas that would be indicative of suboptimal brain function (Galetta et al. 2011). The King-Devick Test includes a demonstration and three test cards with rows of single-digit numbers that are read aloud from left to right. The participant is asked to read the numbers as quickly as possible without making any errors. The administrator records the total time to complete the three cards and the total number of errors made during the test. The results are compared to a personal baseline. The King-Devick Test usually takes approximately 2 minutes to complete and can be administered on either an iPad or hardcopy (King-Devick, 2013). Such tools as well as balance tests may be used either by trained responders as part of an acute sideline or in-field assessment or by health care providers during subsequent clinical evaluation.

Summary Points:

  • The K-D Test is a clinical tool in concussion management that is easy to administer in less than 2 minutes.
  • K-D Test assesses oculomotor ability, rapid number naming, visual attention, and language, which gives insight into neurological pathways controlling these skills, which are often negatively impacted following a head trauma.
  • K-D Test can be used by trained responders during an acute sideline assessment and healthcare providers in clinical evaluation.
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