Are Things Changing with Brain Injuries?
Over the past couple of weeks, there’s been a lot of media coverage on the effects of brain injuries and concussions in football. We’ve seen two articles from Alan Schwarz of The New York Times, as well as stories from The Washington Post and The New York Daily News:
N.F.L. Dementia Debate Could Intensify
By ALAN SCHWARZ
man who began experiencing memory loss and dementia-related symptoms in his 40s, has received relatively low payments from the National Football League’s disability plan because the plan-appointed doctor concluded that football “could not be organically responsible for all or even a major portion” of his condition. Read the rest of the article by clicking HERE.
Then there’s coverage about a new Congressional hearing into what the NFL may have known over the years from the numerous studies that have ended “inconclusively.” And even the NFLPA has decided to jump into the fray by announcing a committee “to study the effects of concussions and head trauma on players.”
Hall-of-Famer and former Congressman Steve Largent talks about some of the “cognitive problems” he’s beginning to acknowledge as the price he’s paying today for the game he played yesterday.
Congress to Hold Hearing on N.F.L. Head Injuries
As debate over football’s long-term effects on players’ cognitive function continues among doctors and the N.F.L., the discussion will soon move to Congress.
Representative John Conyers Jr., a Michigan Democrat and chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, announced in a statement late Friday afternoon that the committee planned to hold hearings on the impact of head injuries sustained by N.F.L. players, “and what can be done to limit them and compensate the players and their families.” Read the rest of the article by clicking HERE.
Even the Seattle Times had comments from local favorite, Lofa Tatupu, who plays for the Seattle Seahawks that seemed to echo a typical young player’s response about long-term injuries.
Brain-donor Tatupu not fazed by NFL dementia study
Lofa Tatupu has had multiple concussions. He’s one of the first three active NFL players who have agreed to donate their brains for research after death. Read the rest of the article by clicking HERE.
NFLPA Forms Committee to Study Head Trauma on Players
Saturday, October 3, 2009
The NFL Players Association announced Friday that it has formed a committee to study the effects of concussions and head trauma on players.
“The health, safety and welfare of our players is never just an issue of collective bargaining,” DeMaurice Smith, the union’s executive director, said in a written statement.
According to the union’s announcement, the committee is to study both the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of concussions and other brain injuries in current players, and the long-term effects of brain injuries on players and how they might be reduced or eliminated. Read the rest of the article by clicking HERE.
NFL study shows football players at greater risk for dementia, Alzheimer’s
By Michael O’Keeffe
DAILY NEWS SPORTS WRITER
Updated Wednesday, September 30th 2009, 12:13 PM
Steelers Hall of Famer Mike Webster suffered from dementia and depression after his NFL career.
A new NFL-commissioned study determined that pro football players suffer from Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia-related ailments far more frequently than other Americans – the first admission from the league that football players are more at risk for memory-related diseases than the national population.
The study, conducted by the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research, is a boon to retired NFL players and their advocates who have claimed for years that the league and its Players Association have ignored the long-term health risks posed by concussions and other football-related injuries. Read the rest of the article by clicking HERE.
Former NFL players not impressed with results of study about head injuries
BY Mitch Abramson
DAILY NEWS SPORTS WRITER
Friday, October 2nd 2009, 4:00 AM
Former Houston Oiler Elvin Bethea is hopeful that NFL will pay attention to latest concussion study.
Bobby Bell, a former NFL linebacker was sitting next to ex-NFL defensive end Ed (Too Tall) Jones, ho was sitting across from former Jet Wayne Chrebet, who was sitting diagonally from Chris Doleman, a former defensive end for the Vikings.
The dining hall was filled Thursday with ex-NFL greats dressed in golf apparel who were on hand to participate in the fifth annual Joe Namath March of Dimes Celebrity Golf Classic at Bethpage State Park in Farmingdale. But they also served another purpose: their presence qualified as a testimony to the rigors of life in the NFL.
As the former players ambled to the putting green a short distance away, their slow gait suggested the movements of a stalled car. Read the rest of the article by clicking HERE.
While there’s enough to be cautiously optimistic, most of the old-timers are cynically pessimistic because they’ve seen it all before. Many of the older players see all this flurry of interest as nothing more than a bargaining chip while the NFLPA and the NFL are posturing in pre-lockout negotiations. Looks like we’ll just have to wait and see.