Recent Articles

Major studies underway on sports-related concussions

Rashida Beal (l) and Simone Kolander

The NCAA and the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) are now partners on a three-year research project on concussions and head injuries in college sport. “I believe this project will be the game changer,” says NCAA Chief Medical Officer Dr. Brian Hainline of the $30 million study that began last fall. Over 37,000 student-athletes in men’s and women’s contact sports from 15 schools,

the five biggest football conferences, the four service academies and the Ivy League are participating in the project, which includes physical exams, head sensors, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies and biogenetic markers. The data obtained will establish a history of concussion, risks and treatment, and also will be beneficial to both athletes and soldiers. Last summer, the NCAA Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports Committee requested that health and safety be considered in every on-field rules change, even if the main reason is ensure fairness. Continue Reading →

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State bill aims for athletic concussion protection, prevention

Law would set standards for head injury care, education for student-athletes and those who work with them

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

(Originally published May 5, 2011 in the MSR)

A bill that would establish education and return-to-play standards for youth athletes following a concussion currently is moving through the Minnesota Legislature. Five states this year already passed such laws: South Dakota, Iowa, Wyoming, Colorado

and Utah. Bill supporters are optimistic that it will be passed before this year’s session concludes in May. A concussion is a type of brain injury that changes the way the brain normally works. It is caused by a bump, blow or jolt to the head, and can also occur from a blow to the body that causes the head and brain to move rapidly back and forth. Continue Reading →

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Concern grows over long-term effects of football head injuries


(Originally published July 5, 2012 in MSR)

Thomas Darden is among more than 2,000 former players who are suing the National Football League, arguing that the league concealed information from them about football-related injuries and long-term brain damage. We are slowly learning that playing football can be dangerous to one’s health. At least three former pro players’ deaths, all ruled suicides, may actually be attributable to brain damage suffered from years of playing the sport. “I forget things,” says Darden, who played defensive back for nine seasons for Cleveland (1972-81). “I may have a thought and lose that thought. Continue Reading →

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