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Beyond the NFL: A new plan to treat brain injuries for women escaping abuse
Yes! Magazine / April 29, 2016

Unlike players in the NFL, women who struggle with lifelong effects of concussions from abuse are rarely diagnosed. In Phoenix, scientists and advocates are working to change that. According to the CDC, nearly a quarter of American women experience extreme physical violence from intimate partners during their lives. Suffering repeated blows to the head, strangulation, and being violently shaken or slammed against the wall puts them at risk for TBI. But the lack of adequate screening and identification systems means that brain injuries often go unrecognized.

We spoke to a neuropathologist about head injuries and degenerative brain disease in soccer
VICE / April 29, 2016

With the family of soccer player Jeff Astle claiming to know up to 250 other ex-players who suffer from degenerative brain diseases, VICE UK spoke to an expert about the implications for the sport.

Study of prep football players finds changes in brain tissue even if no concussion
USA Today / April 29, 2016

The concussion issue just got worse for contact sports. “Our findings add to a growing body of literature demonstrating that a single season of contact sports can result in brain changes regardless of clinical findings or concussion diagnosis,” said senior author Dr. Joseph Maldjian, Neuroradiology Division Chief and Advanced Neuroscience Imaging Research Lab Director at the Peter O’Donnell Jr. Brain Institute at UT Southwestern.

When a player takes a hit, this concussion sensor measures the blow
PBS NewsHour / April 29, 2016

What if coaches could know as soon as an athlete sustains a head injury? A startup in upstate New York has a wearable device that could help keep players safer by sending alerts and measuring hits as soon as they happen.

Can tablets quickly diagnose concussions?
Observer / April 29, 2016

Tablet-based games test whether a player should go back on the field.

A concussion can lead to sleep problems that last for years
NPR / April 28, 2016

Eighteen months after a concussion or other traumatic brain injury, two-thirds of the patients in a recent study were still sleepy during the day. And most were unaware of their symptoms.

5 ways concussion awareness has changed over the years
ABC News (PA) / April 28, 2016

Remember the days of "You just got your bell rung, get back in there!" and "Shake it off!"? Times have certainly changed, and concussion practices continue to evolve from professional sports all the way down to youth leagues. See how concussion awareness has changed from then to now.

Acquired brain injury: Is it really the end?
Brant News / April 28, 2016

The first installment in a four-part series chronicling writer Jesse Ferguson’s experience living with an acquired brain injury. "This is one account of an acquired brain injury (ABI), my own," says writer Jesse Ferguson in his four-part series chronicling his experience living with an acquired brain injury. "Brain injury can end a person’s life as they know it – it can eat you up and spit you out as a completely different person. That’s exactly what happened to me. I lost the physical abilities that I guess I took for granted. People don’t know their life can end before they die. Mine did."

Brain imaging scans show some vegetative patients are living on the edge of consciousness
Newsweek / April 27, 2016

New technologies suggest that for years doctors have over diagnosed patients as vegetative, and underestimated their ability to regain consciousness.

Nevada to require mandatory pre-fight brain testing for boxers and MMA fighters
The Washington Post / April 27, 2016

Boxer Paulie Malignaggi, the former welterweight world champion, and a handful of other fighters visited Capitol Hill on Tuesday to announce funding that will allow the Cleveland Clinic’s study of fighters’ brains to continue and also share the news that in Nevada, every licensed fighter will now be required to undergo brain testing.

Officials cite research as key to progress in PTSD, TBI diagnosis, treatment
DoD News / April 27, 2016

While significant progress has been made in diagnosing and treating post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injuries from a decade and a half of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, challenges remain for the wounded and their families, two military physicians involved in the effort told a Senate panel last week.

New ideas for treating concussions
Bradenton Herald / April 26, 2016

Concussions are a familiar injury to Jeff and Amanda Staples of Haymarket, Va. Their ninth-grade son and seventh-grade daughter play ice hockey. Both have experienced concussions, but their daughter's case last fall was treated much differently than their son's several years ago.

NFL concussion crisis doubters should read these two sentences
The Huffington Post / April 26, 2016

Speaking at the DSBN International Concussion Summit, the former Buffalo Bills Pro Bowler Thurman Thomas said, "One thing that I realized is that discussing the effects of concussions and the reality of the situation doesn’t make me less of a man, less tough, less loyal to the National Football League, [have] a less love for the game. All it means is that I’m not an ignorant fool, and that I don’t ignore factual evidence that this is happening to not only football players, but [to other athletes]."

Hormone deficiency in veterans with concussion
Neurology Advisor / April 26, 2016

Hormonal changes, which are often linked to blast-related concussions leading to problems such as sleep disturbances, fatigue, depression, and poor quality of life, may be prevalent in US military veterans, according to results from a new study conducted in male US service members who had been deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan.

NFL needs big changes to concussion policy, and so does everyone else: Expert
CNBC / April 25, 2016

It's not just concussions, it's the "repetitive trauma…minor trauma found in every play of the game, routinely," says Dr. Ann McKee, director of the Boston University CTE Center that studies the impact of head trauma and concussions. Rather, "over time, years of exposure to…mild head trauma in some individuals leads to this progressive deterioration that usually shows up years later."

Thurman Thomas says he struggles with effects from concussions
ESPN / April 25, 2016

Hall of Fame running back Thurman Thomas opened up for the first time Friday about the effects of concussions he suffered during his 13-year NFL career. Thomas told the crowd at the District School Board of Niagara's international summit on concussions that he had not yet publicly discussed his symptoms.

Pre-concussion somatization predicts longer recovery, New study finds
Neurology Today / April 22, 2016

The first prospective study of pre-injury contributors to concussion recovery indicates that athletes with higher preinjury somatization symptoms who become concussed report more severe post-concussive symptoms, and take longer to experience symptom recovery. The study was published in the April 20 online edition of Neurology.

Experts: Sharing information a key factor in success of TBI research
Stars and Stripes / April 22, 2016

If they are to find the answers, the research community must share information to find a cure – something it isn’t doing now, said Gen. Peter Chiarelli, a retired Army Vice Chief of Staff. “If we are going to make progress in traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress research, we really have got to start collaborating and working together in ways that most researchers cannot imagine,” said Chiarelli.

VA Secretary joins others in pledge to donate brain to VA-lead TBI research program
Park Forest News / April 22, 2016

Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald announced that he has pledged to donate his brains to advance brain research conducted by VA in partnership with the Concussion Legacy Foundation. “As I listened to the very powerful personal stories from Veterans and the challenges the world’s top researchers are working to overcome in TBI, I made a decision: I decided to join the hundreds of Veterans and athletes who have already donated their brain to the VA Brain Bank so that I may, in a small way, contribute to the vital research happening to better understand brain trauma.”

Which kids are most likely to have prolonged concussion symptoms?
Harvard Health / April 20, 2016

An article recently published in JAMA proposed a risk scoring system that could make it easier for clinicians to guide families of children who just suffered a concussion going forward. The study looked at 46 separate risk factors, and determined that nine of them seemed to help predict the likelihood of persistent post-concussive symptoms.

The link between traumatic brain injuries and sexual drive
The Globe and Mail / April 20, 2016

Wayne had a healthy sex life with his wife until a motor-vehicle accident eight years ago caused a traumatic brain injury. “I love him, but there’s not that intimacy or touch, there’s nothing,” says Deborah, who has been married to Wayne for 25 years. While Wayne and Deborah’s candor may be rare, their experience is common.

Raiders old guard struggles with concussion, CTE issue
The Mercury News / April 20, 2016

Former Oakland Raiders players Art Thoms and George Buehler share experiences of life after the ‪‎NFL‬ and possibility of facing degenerative brain disease, such as ‪‎CTE‬. "In the past, a lot of these folks suffered in silence," said Chris Nowinski, co-founder of the Concussion Legacy Foundation. "To see that changing, I'm hoping, is a positive in that it lets people seek professional help. Damaging someone's brain, especially when it is voluntary, is a tragedy."

High-profile brain injury advocate Lee Woodruff accepts award in Vancouver
Vancouver Sun / April 20, 2016

Lee Woodruff was in Vancouver this week to accept the Public Leadership in Neurology Award on Bob’s behalf at the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) conference. The Vancouver Sun spoke to Lee Tuesday. This is an edited and condensed version of the conversation.

Concussion update: U.S. appeals court affirms deal between NFL, retired players
NPR / April 19, 2016

A federal appeals court has affirmed an NFL settlement with retired players that could cost the league $1 billion to handle brain-injury claims over the next 65 years, rejecting appeals from players who disagreed with the terms of the deal. Covering more than 20,000 retired players, the settlement promises to end hundreds of lawsuits filed by athletes who say they suffered chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE.

Heads up: New technologies address traumatic brain injury
MIT Technology Review / April 19, 2016

Wearable devices help “measure the unseen” to improve TBI detection and treatment.

Blood test can hint at concussion, need for surgery
Orlando Sentinel / April 19, 2016

Dr. Linda Papa, an emergency physician at Orlando Regional Medical Center, started researching concussions more than a decade ago, when the topic wasn't as popular as it is today. Papa's latest study, published in the Journal of American Medical Association Neurology, may be getting her closer to the tool she's been looking for: a blood test that would detect mild to moderate brain injuries.

Texas is one step closer to concussion tracking system
NBC News (TX) / April 18, 2016

Texas may be one step closer to a statewide system to track concussions in school sports. Sunday the University Interscholastic League voted to move forward in creating a concussion database that would track the number of concussions happening in school sports in Texas.

MRI features associated with clinical symptoms in mild traumatic brain injury
Neurology Advisor / April 17, 2016

Select metrics of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in patients with mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) significantly correlated with clinical measures, according to new research. Presented at the 2016 annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN), the longitudinal study aimed to predict outcomes by determining multimodal MRI data features that are associated with clinical symptoms in patients with mTBI.

Study shows MMA fighters suffer brain injury in one third of bouts
The Irish Times / April 14, 2016

The recent death of MMA (mixed martial arts) fighter Joao Carvalho from a traumatic brain injury underscores the serious dangers inherent in the sport. While the risks of head injury from boxing are well documented there is a relative paucity of research into the risks from MMA. Canadian researchers writing in the American Journal of Sports Medicine in 2014 found that a MMA fighter suffered a traumatic brain injury in almost one third of professional bouts.

Clinician-mimicking program could improve brain injury analysis
Imperial College London / April 13, 2016

Engineers have developed a computer program that mimics how doctors assess patient scans to determine signs of traumatic brain injury. This year, the team will use the computer program in a large-scale European study. Data from 5,000 patients will be collected from 30 hospitals across Europe and the program will be used to identify TBI in scans.

Pituitary dysfunction after traumatic brain injury may be an uncharacterized chronic disease
Healio / April 13, 2016

Tamara Wexler, MD, PhD, director of the Pituitary Center at New York University Langone Medical Center, gives her perspective on current research into traumatic brain injury. Wexler highlights a study about chronic pituitary effects following TBI and the possible benefits of growth hormone therapy on fatigue and cognitive dysfunction. The researchers are approaching this condition as a previously uncharacterized chronic disease.

40 percent of former NFL players suffer from brain injuries, new study shows
The Washington Post / April 12, 2016

A study that will be presented at next week’s American Academy of Neurology (AAN) meeting offers one of the most conclusive pieces of evidence yet of a definitive link between brain injury and playing football. It shows that “more than 40 percent of retired National Football League players … had signs of traumatic brain injury based on sensitive MRI scans called diffusion tensor imaging,” according to a press release from the AAN.

New concussion treatments go beyond just resting in a dark room
The Washington Post / April 11, 2016

Doctors have found that more active and targeted therapies can producebetter recovery. “We’re taking active, individualized approaches, rather than just having them rest and waiting for the brain to right itself on its own,” said Brooke Pengel, medical director of youth sports medicine at Denver’s Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children.

Concussion goggles help kids recognize brain injury symptoms
CBS (Denver) / April 11, 2016

"Concussion goggles" are helping kids to recognize the signs and symptoms of a concussion. Students at McAuliffe International School had an opportunity to try out the goggles and learn how it feels to walk after suffering a brain injury. "Distorted vision. I feel kind of dizzy, and my balance is kind of offset," says student Aidean Stewart.

The brain that wasn’t supposed to heal
The Atlantic / April 8, 2016

Steve Mishkin's unexpected recovery is a case study in luck, split-second decisions, and the many, many things that need to go right for a trauma patient to get well.

Traumatic brain injury 101
The Journal / April 8, 2016

Recovery from TBI is personal – each person gets better at his or her own pace, which may be influenced by age, severity of injury and other factors, explains U.S. Public Health Service Lt. Sherray Holland. In addition to early intervention, she said it’s important that those who suffer a TBI take care of themselves, “taking things slow and getting rest.” Family and employer understanding and support are also critical to recovery, she added.

A.J. Tarpley retires from NFL at age 23, citing concussions
the New York Times / April 8, 2016

A. J. Tarpley, a linebacker with the Buffalo Bills, said that he is retiring because of repeated concussions, the latest young player to walk away from football because of worries about his long-term health. “This decision is the hardest I’ve made yet, but after much research and contemplation, I believe it’s what is best for me going forward,” Tarpley wrote on his Instagram account.

Concussion addressed at seminar for high school coaches
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette / April 8, 2016

Pennsylvania coaches, athletic directors and trainers representing athletic leagues and schools came to hear Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, former Steelers running back Merril Hoge and others discuss head injuries in football, especially at the high school and youth levels:

Helping my young daughters understand my past brain injury
The Washington Post / April 7, 2016

We’d had some practice already in difficult question territory. Our approach was to play it straight: answer no more but also no less than the question asked, and follow our daughter’s lead. The difference with the aneurysm was that she didn’t know there was a question to ask. The scar that runs across the top of my head is buried beneath my hair. I’m blind in one eye, but my eyes track normally. A prosthesis fills the fist-sized hole where a piece of skull, too diseased to save, once was. When my daughter looks at me, she just sees her mom, healthy and whole.

The perilous aftermath of a simple concussion
The Wall Street Journal / April 6, 2016

Susan Pinker on how a concussion was both a personal struggle for her and a catalyst to study a phenomenon still only partly understood.

Concussion and cognitive skills: What's the impact?
Fox News / April 6, 2016

In a new study researchers found that a concussion's effect on visual working memory — the ability to remember specific things you have seen — may last much longer than scientists had thought.  There's been an assumption that a concussion can affect a person's thinking skills for several weeks, the researchers said. But the new study showed that the effects may last as long as 55 years.

Study: Horse riding is leading cause of sport-related brain injuries
ABC News / April 4, 2016

Sports-related head injuries are increasingly gaining attention as researchers investigate long-term consequences of multiple concussions. Concerns about the neurodegenerative disease known as chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), has put a focus on contact sports such as football and soccer. However, a study released today by the journal Neurological Focus found that the sport that causes most traumatic brain injuries isn't even a contact sport, it's horseback riding.

How I regained my humanity after a brain injury
The Huffington Post / April 4, 2016

A brain injury brings with it a confusing barrage of physical, emotional and cognitive changes that affects the survivor deeply and personally. The simplest expression of this is when we say, “I don’t know who I am anymore.” This is also known as a loss of humanity. It has profound implications, manifesting itself as confusion, doubt and depression, and making our “recovery” that much more difficult. In my own situation, the hardships I encountered left me thinking, a number of times, that my life wasn’t worth living.

Fort Bragg facility to address soldiers’ PTSD, depression, brain injuries
CBS News (NC) / April 4, 2016

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, depression, traumatic brain injury are all among the wounds soldiers are carrying home. Fort Bragg has opened a place to tackle these demons of war. The Intrepid Spirit Center at Fort Bragg, which expects to service nearly 1,700 soldiers annually, is the fifth of nine centers of its kind built around the country.

Pituitary insufficiency is prevalent after blast concussion in military veterans
Medical Xpress / April 4, 2016

A study in military veterans finds that explosive blast-related concussions frequently result in hormone changes leading to problems such as sleep disturbances, fatigue, depression and poor quality of life. The research was presented over the weekend at the Endocrine Society's 98th annual meeting by the study's leader, Charles Wilkinson, PhD, a researcher with VA Puget Sound Health Care.

Legislation would halt bad military discharges due to PTSD, TBI
Military Times / March 31, 2016

Lawmakers want to avoid having troops disgracefully forced from the ranks because of behavior related to post-traumatic stress or traumatic brain injuries, but Pentagon officials may already be on the way to fixing the problem. Earlier this month, a coalition of lawmakers who served in Iraq and Afghanistan introduced legislation to ensure that military discharge review boards must consider troops’ mental health issues, and must accept a PTSD or TBI diagnosis from a professional as an acceptable rebuttal to a dismissal.


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