February 01, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/
-- The dangers of athletics: High school football and brain damage
All sports involve some risk of injury. The nature of athletics coupled with the fearlessness of many children leads to thousands of sports-related accidents yearly. Yet, a recent study has brought forth disturbing data concerning long-term brain damage in football players, even those who only play at an amateur level.
High school football may lead to long-term brain damage
The Boston University Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy recently conducted a study which found evidence that playing football in high school can lead to long-term brain damage.
Researchers examined the brains of 85 deceased people who were military veterans and former athletes. In their examination, researchers looked for signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy. CTE is a neurodegenerative disease that can be the result of repetitive mild traumatic brain injuries.
Of the brains examined, 68 were found to have CTE, and 34 of those brains belonged to former professional football players and one semi-pro football player. More surprisingly, 15 of the 68 brains with CTE were from people who had only played high school or college football.
Through a survey conducted as part of the study, the Boston University researchers were able to confirm a total of 50 cases of football players with CTE. Most alarming, the study found CTE injuries in six individuals who only played football in high school. Although, this data indicates that short-term football activity can lead to CTE injuries, it may not necessarily mean that playing football will automatically lead to such brain injuries.
Ongoing debate over relationship between football and CTE
Not all neuroscience experts believe there is a correlation between football and brain injuries. Among these skeptics is the co-director of the Matthew Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Institute at the University of North Carolina, who also serves on the NFL's Head, Neck & Spine committee. He recently said that most of the neuroscience community, including himself, does not believe that studies have found a causal relationship between repetitive head trauma in football and CTE.
Moreover, many athletes are not convinced by the study's findings. A former Harvard football player does not see a causal relationship and called such assertions "smoke and mirrors." An orthopedic surgeon who is in charge of scientific activities for the International Olympics Committee also has doubts about Boston University's research.
Legal options for a sports injury
Regardless of what future research will conclude, the results of the study will certainly fuel the ongoing debate regarding the risks of football. Further, for all sports, it is important that there's proper supervision and safety equipment and that those responsible do their utmost to avoid serious accidents and injuries. If you have a loved one who has suffered a traumatic brain injury through sports, it is wise to contact an experienced personal injury attorney. An attorney can help you assess your options and whether the injured party may be entitled to compensation.
Article provided by Bamieh & Erickson PLC
Visit us at http://www.bamiehericksonpersonalinjury.com---
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