Sir.—The article by DuRant and colleagues1 is disturbing in the narrow view it takes of the purposes of the preparticipation examination of athletes.
The preparticipation examination is one of the few chances the physician (either pediatrician or family physician) has to make direct one-on-one contact with his or her patient. While the obvious agenda is to assure that the person can participate safely in the athletic event(s), an equally important part of the examination is related to the development of an effective physician-patient relationship and to some attempt at intervention in the major risk factors for patients of this age.
In this latter regard it is interesting that the health history questions do not relate to seat belt use, alcohol consumption, smoking, stages of sexual development, or appropriate use of contraceptives. Although obviously not directly related to participation in sports examination, these factors are important in comprehensive patient
BEASLEY JW. Preparticipation Examination of Athletes. Am J Dis Child. 1986;140(1):7. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1986.02140150009006
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