News & Headlines

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Investigate West  | Dec 19, 2018
Sue Casey suspects that the multiple concussions her husband, Randy, sustained in his football had something to do with the way his personality changed near the end of his life. "Toward the end, he was depressed. He got quieter and quieter. I never knew who I was coming home to — Jekyll or Hyde. His mood could change at the turn of a dime. He got to be very suspicious — I would say paranoid. I felt like I was the enemy. He would get really upset if you didn’t agree with him. I’d bring it up about how he had changed or something I noticed, and he humiliated me in front of our kids to the point where you never said anything. You were too afraid of what would happen."
The Huffington Post | Dec 19, 2018
About half of all people with brain injury are affected by depression within the first year after injury. Even more (nearly two-thirds) are affected within seven years after injury. Below, people who’ve dealt with depression explain how friends and family can help ease the burden.
Investigate West  | Dec 19, 2018
Hunter Holmes, an active teen and the goalkeeper for Redmond High School's soccer team suffered a life-changing blow to the head. Less than two months later, he committed suicide. Hunter’s grieving parents will never know the reason he took his own life. But they work to promote teen suicide and concussion awareness in tandem.
California Magazine (UC Berkeley) | Dec 18, 2018
The concussion crisis has been mostly associated with the NFL, but the problem takes on an added dimension at the college and scholastic level, for the simple reason that schools are in the business of educating minds, not damaging them. Now, as the number of cases mounts and class action lawsuits fly, an increasing number of parents are questioning the wisdom of allowing their sons to suit up. As in 1906, critics are demanding reform. Back then, it was President Teddy Roosevelt who led the charge to save football, while several college presidents, including the University of California’s Benjamin Ide Wheeler, found the sport bankrupt beyond salvation.
Seattle Children's Hospital | Dec 17, 2018
New research from Seattle Children's Research Institute and UW Medicine's Sports Health and Safety Institute found concussion rates among football players ages 5-14 were higher than previously reported, with five out of every 100 youth, or 5%, sustaining a football-related concussion each season.
King5 News (WA) | Dec 17, 2018
Family members of Rod Jones, a former University of Washington tight end and NFL player who died by suicide Saturday, said they believe head trauma from football led to the 54-year-old's downward spiral. "He was changing and morphing into something that was so irrational, so scared, so loss-of-control. The last six months have been noticeably scary for me here at home," said his wife and partner of 32 years, Carla Jones.
Chicago Tribune | Dec 17, 2018
Operation Combat Bikesaver started as a nonprofit in October 2015. The mission was to teach vets, especially from Iraq and Afghanistan, how to rebuild motorcycles and their lives after war. Founder Jason Zaideman wanted to offer a therapeutic outlet for vets suffering from symptoms of PTSD, traumatic brain injuries, suicidal thoughts, depression and post-military social isolation. "It has to be a direct comparison between a motorcycle that is beat up and forgotten about," he said. "The veteran is the same way. They both work on each other. Resurrect each other."
Dayton Daily News (OH) | Dec 17, 2018
"If an individual sustains a concussion from participating in sports or other physical activity, they should seek proper medical care," says Ohio Rep. Niraj Antani. "This bill serves as a legacy to Cody's memory and will help prevent future tragedies." Cody Hamblin, 22, died May 29, 2016, in a drowning during which he suffered a seizure that CTE contributed to, according to Antani.
Insider | Dec 17, 2018
Scientists have been trying to unravel the mysteries of the human brain for centuries, and they've uncovered some pretty fascinating stuff about how our grey matter really works. Here are a few truly incredible facts about the human brain.
FiveThrityEight | Dec 17, 2018
Over the past few years, the NFL has been haunted by the early deaths of some former players whose brains showed signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy. CTE is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by memory loss, mood disorders, dementia and other brain-related problems. But how prevalent is CTE, and how likely are players to develop it? Those remain unanswered questions, despite ongoing attempts to answer them.
The Post-Standard (NY) | Dec 17, 2018
Tim Green recently disclosed on national TV he suspects repeated football-related head injuries caused his ALS, a fatal nervous system disorder also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. The former Syracuse University all-American and NFL player suffered so many concussions playing football he stopped counting them. "I used my head on every play," said Green."It was like throwing myself head first into a concrete wall." Green's diagnosis underscores a long-running debate about whether playing football and other sports can cause the rare, debilitating disease.
TIME | Dec 14, 2018
For years, studies have found that depression is an all-too-common symptom of concussions. Youth athletes, college athletes and retired NFL players who have suffered brain injuries are all at increased risk of mental illness. A new study, published in The Journal of Pediatrics, flips the relationship between concussions and depression, and asks a different question: Are kids who have depression more at risk of suffering a concussion while playing football?
Harvard Health | Dec 14, 2018
Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) is unfortunately quite common, and some estimates suggest that millions of women may be sustaining unacknowledged, unaddressed, and often repetitive mild TBIs or concussions from their partners. Despite the plethora of concussion-related research in athletics and the military — concussion-related research in the context of intimate partner violence remains scant, representing a barely recognized and highly understudied public health epidemic.
The Washington Post | Dec 13, 2018
The family of Augustus “Gus” Lee, the University of Richmond football player who died early Tuesday morning, will donate his brain to the Veterans Administration-Boston University-Concussion Legacy Foundation Brain Bank, a repository of more than 650 donations established to study traumatic brain injuries and the neurodegenerative illness chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Lee was found dead in his snow-covered car just off the Richmond campus at 1:35 a.m., on Dec. 11, according to police. The Virginia Office of the Chief Medical Examiner reported the cause of death was suicide by asphyxiation. He was 20 years old.
The New York times | Dec 13, 2018
Tyler Hilinski, a quarterback at Washington State, killed himself in January and was posthumously diagnosed with C.T.E. His brother is a star recruit at the same position. Ryan said he thinks about C.T.E. in relation to other players more than himself, but he remains wary and knows the risk of a brain injury.
Inside Edition | Dec 13, 2018
What would you do if the happiest memories of your life suddenly vanished? That's what happened to Sgt. Lisa Crutch, a soldier who manned machine guns in Iraq. Inside Edition teamed up with Wounded Warrior Project to learn why Crutch is among the many veterans who credit the organization's free services with helping them heal.
The Guardian | Dec 12, 2018
Suffering a traumatic head injury is a terrifying ordeal, with serious implications for the way we live. Yet, strangely, there can be an upside. Here, four people tell Sirin Kale about their experiences.
The Daily Nonpareil | Dec 12, 2018

While many people know carbon monoxide poisoning can be deadly, the fact that it can cause brain injuries — and with them, long-term aftereffects — is not as widely known. “It is a thing, and it’s a thing that we are quite concerned about,” said Dr. Jeffrey Cooper, director of hyperbaric medicine at Nebraska Medicine. Carbon monoxide, he said, prevents adequate oxygen from being delivered to tissues. But in some patients, it also can trigger an inflammatory response, in which the body attacks its own nervous system. Sometimes the effects appear immediately. In others, problems manifest later.

Reuters | Dec 12, 2018

Female military veterans with traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder or depression are more likely to develop dementia later in life than peers without those conditions, a U.S. study suggests. Each of those conditions was associated with an increased risk for dementia, and if a female vet was diagnosed with more than one, that risk went up, researchers report in Neurology.

The Telegraph | Dec 12, 2018
Steve McCulley served in the Royal Marines for 17 years and rose to the rank of major before he was injured by an improvised explosive device (IED) in Afghanistan in 2011. “I came to terms with dying in a trench, but when that didn’t happen, I looked at life differently,” he told The Daily Telegraph. The veteran founded Lios Bikes in 2013, following three years of rehab.
Bustle | Dec 11, 2018
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, no one experiences PTSD the same way. Some people may start experiencing symptoms within the first few months of the traumatic event, the NIMH says, while others don’t start experiencing symptoms until years later. And those symptoms are pretty varied and complex.
NPR | Dec 7, 2018
For almost a decade, the conventional wisdom on treating childhood concussions has been "keep kids at home, keep them in a dark room with no screens and minimal stimulation, and ban any sort of physical exertion." But in light of recent research, this month the American Academy of Pediatrics updated its guideline for treating mild brain trauma, urging physicians and parents to let kids return to school sooner, and allow them to use electronics and ease back into physical activity after just a couple of days of rest.
The New York Times | Dec 6, 2018

Some people are surprised that Chuck's injuries would cause such problems for our family, particularly because his wounds aren't as apparent as severe burns or lost limbs. In many ways, his injuries are even harder on our children than on him. And because they can't see their father's injuries, the details of what happened to him are supplied by their imaginations.

NPR | Dec 3, 2018
A single season playing football might be all it takes to change a young athlete's brain. Those are the preliminary findings of research presented this week in Chicago at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America. MRI scans of the brains of young football players suggest that repeated blows to the head can change the shape of nerve fibers in the corpus callosum, which connects the two halves of the brain.
The New York Times | Dec 3, 2018
Todd Ewen, one of hockey’s most aggressive fighters, who fatally shot himself at age 49 in September 2015, did not have the disease, despite displaying a wide range of symptoms for it. That was the conclusion of doctors in Toronto. It turned out to be wrong. A new analysis of Ewen's brain tissue confirms he had the degenerative brain disease, despite what a Canadian doctor initially found. That doctor went on to work for the NHL.
Los Angeles Times | Dec 3, 2018
Last month, the NFL announced that it is awarding more than $35 million in grants to fund research on brain injuries. The recipients of the league’s largesse include researchers at prestigious academic institutions such as Boston Children’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, the University of Pittsburgh and UC San Francisco. Peter Chiarelli, who chaired the scientific advisory board to allocate the NFL’s funds, said the league did not influence the panel in any way: “We were totally independent.” We’ve seen this story line before.
Los Angeles Times | Dec 3, 2018
At least 10% of NFL players could develop chronic traumatic encephalopathy, the devastating neurodegenerative disease linked to repeated head trauma, according to a study published this week in the journal Neurology. Their work built on a study published last year that found signs of CTE in 110 of 111 brains of deceased NFL players examined by a group associated with Boston University. The researchers compared the 110 brains with CTE from the previous study with the 1,142 NFL players who died while it ran from 2008 to 2016. That showed at minimum 9.6% of players who died had CTE.
CBC News (BC) | Dec 3, 2018
In an alternate universe where cowboys don't get concussions, Matt O'Flynn's rodeo career would never end. "I wish I could ride bulls until I was 90," he says, speaking from his hometown of Quesnel, BC. But this weekend, the 28-year-old will saddle up one last time at the Bull Riders Canada final following through on a decision made in a moment of mortal reckoning brought on by the suicide of friend and fellow B.C. bull rider Ty Pozzobon.
New York Post | Dec 3, 2018
Hunt could use New York Mets fans' support again. He is coping with Parkinson’s disease, the well-known, incurable neurodegenerative disorder that, new studies show, very well may have resulted from the damage that Hunt incurred during his career. “I don’t know what I’ve got,” Ron Hunt said. “My memory’s shot. I get the shakes in this [left] hand. I go to rehab. They talk to me, but they don’t do anything.”
NBC News (CT) | Dec 3, 2018
A federal judge in Connecticut has ruled that thousands of Navy and Marine Corps veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan who developed post-traumatic stress disorder but were denied Veterans Affairs benefits can sue the military. Senior U.S. District Judge Charles Haight Jr. on Thursday certified a class-action lawsuit against Navy Secretary Richard Spencer by veterans who say they were given less-than-honorable discharges for minor infractions linked to untreated mental health problems. The discharge designation prevents them from getting VA health benefits.
Neurology Advisor | Dec 3, 2018

Left atrial diameter (LAD) has been shown to be independently associated with prevalent brain infarcts, in particular nonlacunar infarcts, but not with leukoaraiosis (ie, white matter disease), according to an analysis of data from the prospective Cardiovascular Health Study (CHS). Results of the study were published in Neurology.

The Daily Tar Heel | Dec 3, 2018
Since the early 2000s, hundreds of studies have been conducted to determine the origin CTE and results of the disease. In 2011, Dean of the UNC College of Arts and Sciences Kevin Guskiewicz received a MacArthur Fellowship – informally known as a "Genius Grant" – for research in sports-related brain injuries. Now, with part of a $14.7 million grant from the NFL, Guskiewicz and researchers at UNC will survey up to 2,500 former NFL players, the largest group of former NFL players studied thus far, in partnership with the Harvard Medical School, Boston Children’s Hospital and the Medical College of Wisconsin. UNC will receive $4.7 million of the grant.
CNN | Dec 3, 2018
Life expectancy in the United States declined from 2016 to 2017, yet the 10 leading causes of death remained the same, according to three government reports released Thursday. Increasing deaths due to drug overdoses and suicides explain this slight downtick in life expectancy, the US Centers for Disease Control says. Overdose deaths reached a new high in 2017, topping 70,000, while the suicide rate increased by 3.7%, the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics reports.
Washington State University Insider | Dec 3, 2018
Families of rural children with mild head injuries pay more for medical care and get less of it, a Washington State University analysis has found. Janessa M. Graves, an assistant professor of nursing at WSU Spokane, analyzed data on more than 380,000 children with mild traumatic brain injuries. Researchers found the rural patients got less care. Meanwhile, their healthcare costs were significantly higher than those of urban youth in the six months after being injured.
Cosmos Magazine | Dec 3, 2018
A fossil record littered with broken bones and fractured skulls has given Neanderthals a reputation for having led lives full of risk and violence. But that reputation is unfair, according to a fresh analysis of prehistoric knocks to the head. The study, published in the journal Nature, is the first to compare Neanderthals – thought to be particularly prone to head injury – with members of our own species who lived in Western Eurasia at the same time as our closest known relative. What they found was that head trauma was no more common in Neanderthals than in Palaeolithic humans.
CBS News (CO) | Dec 2, 2018

Actor Scott Takeda has appeared in big movies like Gone Girl, Dallas Buyers Club and Whiskey Tango Foxtrot but few people know that back in 2016 he sustained a traumatic brain injury. Now he is directing a new film with hopes of removing the stigma from the condition itself as well as using marijuana as a way to treat it.

Futurity | Nov 30, 2018

A genetic variation may explain why similar levels of head trauma can cause some people to suffer more drastic symptoms of CTE than others.

University of California | Nov 30, 2018

UCLA biologists have created the first cell “atlas” of the hippocampus – the part of the brain that helps regulate learning and memory – when it is affected by traumatic brain injury.

Forbes | Nov 30, 2018

Raiders legend Jim Plunkett wants every football player to know more about concussions. Plunkett has joined former NFL stars Steve Young and Ronnie Lott to raise awareness of concussions and educate young football players about the risks of playing concussed.

Reuters | Nov 30, 2018

Some veterans may experience a sharper decline in symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) with meditation-based therapy than with other forms of treatment, a recent study suggests.

CDC | Nov 26, 2018
HEADS UP to Healthcare Providers is a free online training developed by CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics. The goal of the training is to provide an overview of the evidence-based recommendations outlined in the CDC Pediatric mTBI Guideline and to equip healthcare providers with practical strategies to integrate these recommendations into clinical practice.
The Boston Globe | Nov 26, 2018
A number of start-ups are experimenting with drugs that could be taken immediately after blunt head trauma in the hope of preventing or limiting damage. Clinical trials of experimental drugs have invariably ended in disappointment. Among the best-known were two studies in 2014 of the hormone progesterone given to people immediately after acute traumatic brain injuries. Still, researchers continue the hunt.
The Good Men Project | Nov 26, 2018
Visual problems are often overlooked during the initial evaluation of a concussion as some symptoms may not be present until days, weeks, or even longer following the incident. To assist concussion sufferers and their caregivers, as well as health care professionals who may see or be treating a patient following a concussion or other TBI, The Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association (NORA) and Concussion Legacy Foundation have developed a new educational resource titled Common Vision Problems & Symptoms Following a Concussion.
ABC News | Nov 26, 2018
Your imagination — normally associated with childhood fun — might have the power to help treat anxiety and fear, according to a new study. Researchers from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City explored the exact brain pathways that people use when they learn — and unlearn — how to react to threats. They found that imagining a threatening scenario might provide similar benefits to exposure therapy for someone who has been through a traumatic event. The researchers hope to use this knowledge to improve treatments for people with post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.
San Antonio Express-News | Nov 26, 2018
As a psychiatrist, I encounter many frustrations regarding lack of appropriate services, disparities to care and the stigma that surrounds mental health. Some of the ugliest stigma exists around the diagnosis of PTSD, wrongheadedly due to a culture that values “being strong” or “getting over” adversity. This culture is intensified in the military.
The Huffington Post | Nov 26, 2018
We are now better able to recognize PTSD, and treatments have certainly advanced, but we still don’t have a full understanding of just what PTSD is. Three scholars who have individually studied PTSD weigh in on why after decades of studying combat-related trauma, we still don’t have a full understanding of PTSD.
The Boston Globe | Nov 24, 2018
Despite growing public awareness of the dangers of repeated head impacts no drugs have been approved to treat concussions. For the estimated 2.8 million cases of traumatic brain injuries that are seen in US hospital emergency rooms each year, the main prescription remains unchanged: rest. Now, a number of start-ups are experimenting with drugs that could be taken immediately after blunt head trauma in the hope of preventing or limiting damage.
Toronto Sun | Nov 24, 2018
Throughout the 1970s Ken Dryden famously protected Team Canada and Montreal Canadiens nets from those imposing threats. Now he’s on a mission to fight a far more serious threat – on behalf of young Canadian athletes in all sports, at all levels. That is, concussions. The Hockey Hall of Fame goaltender and former Liberal cabinet minister on Wednesday will tell a parliamentary subcommittee studying sports-related concussions in Canada that the problem is no longer awareness. Dryden will tell the subcommittee that there “is plenty of awareness. The problem is sports decision-makers who don’t take this awareness and act. “We have a problem … A knee that limps is one thing. A brain that limps is another.”
The Globe and Mail  | Nov 24, 2018
Awareness of concussions and chronic traumatic encephalopathy has increased exponentially. But there’s more work to be done. With that in mind, a non-partisan subcommittee met on Wednesday for the first time in Ottawa, tasked with delivering recommendations on how to make sports safer and protecting youth from concussions.
New York Times | Nov 20, 2018

After years of legal wrangling, the N.H.L. and hundreds of its retired players announced a settlement to the players’ concussion lawsuit last Monday. $18.9 million.

NBC News | Nov 20, 2018

A federal judge in Connecticut has ruled that thousands of Navy and Marine Corps veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan who developed post-traumatic stress disorder but were denied Veterans Affairs benefits can sue the military.

Pamplin Media Group | Nov 20, 2018

Head injuries in girls' soccer are an 'unpublicized epidemic' according to national researchers.

USA Today | Nov 20, 2018

Through its Scientific Advisory Board established as part of its "Play Smart. Play Safe" initiative, the NFL is awarding grants to investigative teams focusing on concussions and associated conditions, including chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).

MD Magazine | Nov 20, 2018

A meta-analysis of more than 7 million patients confirms that just 1 instance of a concussion or mild TBI is associated with a two-fold greater risk of suicide.

AAP | Nov 12, 2018
In its first update in eight years, the AAP cites the latest research into the incidence and treatment of these injuries in the clinical report, “Sport-Related Concussion in Children and Adolescents,” published in the December issue of Pediatrics. Over the past few years, guidance on treatment and recovery of injured players has evolved. The AAP report reflects the latest research on recommendations, which now call for reducing – but not eliminating – a return to some physical and cognitive activity in the days following a concussion.
Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News | Nov 12, 2018
Researchers from the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute in Salt Lake City have found that patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) also show signs of asymptomatic brain injury. They reported the results of their study at the American Heart Association Scientific Session conference in Chicago. “We think patients with atrial fibrillation experience chronic, subclinical cerebral injuries,” said Oxana Galenko, Ph.D., the study’s lead investigator. In the study, researchers performed MRIs on atrial fibrillation patients and found that 41% showed signs of at least one kind of a silent brain damage.
Global News (Canada) | Nov 12, 2018
New changes to the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) are being touted by B.C.’s NDP government as a way to save the money-losing insurer a billion dollars a year, but a B.C. health advocate says the new regulations will bring challenges to some head injury victims. “We’ve come to the realization that there is no such thing as a minor brain injury,” says Geoffrey Sing, chair of the British Columbia Brain Injury Association. One of the new changes would reclassify mild concussions as minor injuries, likely capping pain and suffering awards at $5,500. Sing says the move is overly broad given the huge range of outcomes with head injuries and concussions.
The Post and Courier | Nov 12, 2018
Last week brought both good and bad news for football regarding the degenerative brain condition known as CTE. On one hand, a study showed just how big a problem CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy) is for the sport. Another study offered a glimpse of the future for predicting athletes at risk and developing treatments to reverse the disease. Lst week, researchers at Boston University published a study that links a specific gene to CTE. Specifically, the gene appears to be implicated among former players who developed the most severe forms of the condition.
KATU News (OR) | Nov 12, 2018
When Jarm Hawes suffered a stroke in 2015, the physical effects were devastating. She couldn’t get around without a walker. Her left eye drifted, and the stroke paralyzed her face, leaving it twisted and slack. With rehab work, she regained the ability to walk, and her eye started working better. But one thing she thought she’d lost permanently was a critical piece of her appearance. Her smile. Dr. Loyo thought she could help. Loyo is one of the few doctors on the West Coast who perform nerve transfer surgeries to reanimate faces that have been frozen by injury.
Detroit News | Nov 12, 2018
Plans call for the University of Michigan School of Kinesiology to create a comprehensive concussion center. The Ann Arbor school says the University of Michigan Biosciences Initiative awarded $5.6 million for the Michigan Concussion Center. The center will seek to answer fundamental questions about concussion prevention, identification, diagnosis, management and outcomes. The School of Kinesiology will have dedicated space for the center in its new building, which is scheduled to be completed in fall 2020.
The Tennessean | Nov 12, 2018
There's a middle ground between reckless dismissal of CTE research and the fear of football that has gripped some people. People are worried about the future of the sport, and I get that, but the answer is not to ignore the information that is being gathered or cry conspiracy. The answer is to digest it and ask for more. To understand that we aren’t close to where we need to be in understanding CTE, and that this research hopefully will allow us to gauge susceptibility to CTE at some point.
NBC News 11 (GA) | Nov 7, 2018
Allan DaPore fell down a flight of stairs, changing his life forever with a severe brain injury. Now, his life is changing again as he begins a new life with the woman who stood by his side at Atlanta's Shepherd Center. Kaitlin Fitzgerald, Allan's fiance, said she confronted some hard truths – she was 24 years old and they weren’t married. It was uncertain whether her boyfriend would ever resemble the man she fell in love with years earlier. “I’m sure she had some of the hardest days you can imagine. But when she was in front of him, it was all about him,” said Jessica Berman, DaPore’s speech-language pathologist. “By the time he left Shepherd, she had taken on the role of speech therapist, occupational therapist, physical therapist … everything.”
The Conversation | Nov 7, 2018
The sports world is understandably eager to prevent concussions, but some of the products on the market are not helping and may even hurt, by leading people to feel protected when they are not. As a physiologist and sports medicine researcher, I study how the body responds to exercise and other stressors. I also study ways to prevent and treat sports injuries. As the public learns more about the potential long-term dangers of contact sports parents, athletes and sports organizations are desperate to find a quick fix to the concussion crisis. Unfortunately, I do not think there is an easy solution to make inherently high-risk sports safe.
CNN | Nov 5, 2018
Scientists have zeroed in our genetic code to better determine why some people develop chronic traumatic encephalopathy, the Alzheimer's-like disease associated with repeated hits to the head. In a new study, researchers at Boston University's CTE Center say that a variant of the gene TMEM106B may influence why some people experience more severe forms of the disease than others.
Physcian's Weekly | Nov 5, 2018
Getting a good sleep each night after a sports-related concussion might be linked to a shorter recovery time in adolescents, new research suggests. Young athletes who slept well after a concussion were more likely to recover within two weeks, while those who slept poorly were more likely to endure symptoms for 30 days or more, according to research presented at the American Academy of Pediatrics conference in Orlando, Florida.
USA Today | Nov 5, 2018
From Abilene Christian University to Yale, an analysis released Friday showed that 147 college football programs had at least one former player diagnosed with the degenerative brain disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). The Concussion Legacy Foundation made the data, culled from a study released earlier this year by Boston researchers, public on Friday.
Boca Newspaper (FL) | Nov 5, 2018
Many organizations and high schools are implementing programs to assess for the baseline brain activity of their athletes prior to the start of the season. In essence, a snap shot of the athletes brain function is taken prior to the athletic competition so as to be able to compare neurological function after a concussion and determine the amount of injury sustained. These tests also provide a baseline marker for objective “return to play” benchmarks. This takes away the subjective reporting of a child which in many cases cannot even accurately describe what they are feeling.
Penn State News | Nov 5, 2018
A gene associated with the learning disorder dyslexia may offer researchers clues about variations in individual athletes’ susceptibility to concussions, according to a pilot study by Penn State and Northwestern University. Out of the nine genes studied, researchers found that one — called KIAA0319 — significantly predicted the number of previously diagnosed concussions for the combined cohorts.
Yahoo! Lifestyle | Nov 5, 2018
Former football player Jon McCall suffers from possible complications of CTE and his wife, Sara, is caring for him. Sara wants to share her story in the hopes that she can prevent future generations from adding to those numbers, possibly by dissuading parents from letting their kids play football to begin with. “Even if it’s just one mom reading the article and saying, ‘Oh my God, I didn’t know this,'” she says.
U.S. News & World Report | Nov 5, 2018
Evidence of ongoing brain injuries is present in football players at ages younger than previously thought. Researchers from Orlando Health found in a new study that there is lasting evidence of brain injuries from repeated trauma to the head present in football players at an "alarmingly young age." The study, published in the Journal of Neurotrauma, analyzed blood samples and neurocognitive assessments from Division I college football players in the NCAA to see if the players had biomarkers that indicated they had traumatic brain injuries.
USA Today | Nov 2, 2018
For debilitated and often-broke former football players and their families, the National Football League's agreement to pay more than $1 billion in a settlement for victims of chronic brain trauma appeared to be the end of the battle that had consumed them for years. The money was supposed to provide a measure of peace and stability for the wives, widows and children of tormented players who had died young or are fading away in nursing homes. Not disclosed, however, is the significant portion of the fund that is being withheld from those it was promised. As the award notifications begin to trickle out, some of the recipients have been stunned to find they may receive just pennies on the dollar of what they’re owed, likely setting off another spate of frustrating court battles. Some have even received notices that show pending payments in the negative.
NBC News | Nov 1, 2018
Children’s sports leagues across California are required, by law, to follow certain safety measures to guard against injuries resulting from concussions, however, an NBC Bay Area investigation revealed a widespread disparity in training and a serious lack of enforcement could be putting thousands of children at higher risk for brain injuries.
Forbes | Nov 1, 2018
Despite new recommendations that children with mild head injuries can forego brain scans, the rate of scans for assessing children following head injuries has not changed. Educational efforts on concussion identification and management may lead to reduction in unnecessary scans in kids.
Indianapolis Star | Nov 1, 2018
The most comprehensive study of concussions that looked at college athletes in a number of sports and the military will now turn its focus to what happens to those injured after graduation. The NCAA-DOD Concussion Assessment, Research and Education Consortium, known as the CARE Consortium, has received an additional $22.5 million from the U.S. Department of Defense and the NCAA to expand its focus from the campus to the four years in the real world. “What the money is going to do is allow us to pivot from a study of the acute effects of concussion to answering questions about whether there are cumulative or persistent effects of concussion,” said Dr. Thomas McAllister, one of the study’s leaders.
Indianapolis Star | Nov 1, 2018
The Ohio Supreme Court says the widow of a former University of Notre Dame football player can sue the school and the NCAA over allegations her husband was disabled by concussions during his college playing days in the 1970s. Steve and Yvette Schmitz filed a lawsuit in 2014 alleging the institutions showed "reckless disregard" for player safety and failed to protect them from concussions.
WTSP News (FL) | Nov 1, 2018
As we learn more about head injuries and concussions, new treatment options are becoming available. One Florida clinic bases its treatment program on the idea that the brain can adapt. "What we try to do is use all of our tools in our figurative toolbox: chiropractic, physical therapy, speech, occupational therapy, vestibular rehab," Dr. Matthew Antonucci, a chiropractic neurologist said. "All of these different types of rehabilitation tools to create a customized planned to get someone functioning at their highest level possible."
The Washington Post | Oct 30, 2018
High school quarterback Jack Esquivel had symptoms for months after sustaining a concussion last year. But his love of the game led to his parents allowing him back on the field. Jack’s parents had mixed feelings when he returned to the field. Ever since, his parents have been extra concerned over Jack’s well-being on the field, even for injuries that are nowhere near his head.
CBS (PA) | Oct 29, 2018
Football is a favorite across the country, and now, for younger players, there is a renewed emphasis on safety as many youth football leagues are learning a contact sport, with no hitting. A number of schools have turned to flag football for young players. “When we were playing tackle, we were sending them over to the ambulance for concussion protocol and it just got to the point where we were like, ‘This is crazy,’” said flag football coach Brian Oleksa.
The Seattle Times | Oct 26, 2018
This week, former Steelers running back Merril Hoge and Boston University neuropathologist Peter Cummings released a book challenging the link between football and CTE — the brain disease found posthumously in a couple hundred former NFL players, including suicide victims Junior Seau and Dave Duerson. In promoting the new book, Hoge and Cummings penned an Op-Ed for Yahoo Sports that questioned CTE research and the media “hysteria” surrounding it.
San Francisco Chronicle | Oct 26, 2018
John Begley created a film that is a compilation of every reported concussion in an NFL regular season or postseason game in 2017. Begley’s film humanizes players, giving viewers a better sense of the violence they endure. “I didn’t want it to be a highlight reel of hard hits because those exist, and because those are very difficult to watch,” Begley said. “And in some ways, I feel like watching them desensitizes me more to what I’m seeing.”
Federal News Network | Oct 26, 2018
Head traumas can be hard for doctors to spot, mostly because not all the warning signs are usually present. But the Army Rapid Equipping Force‘s (REF) new devices can come in handy for that very reason. The tools provide an objective measure of brain activity, instead of relying on split-second reactions that a human may miss when inspecting soldiers. The REF teamed up with Army Medical Research and Materiel Command (MRMC) to deliver two new tools for traumatic brain injuries to soldiers in Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait and Korea. The first device interprets brain electrical activity and neurocognitive function. The second tool rapidly detects brain hematomas in patients with head injuries.
Well + Good | Oct 26, 2018
Amanda Burrill is a Navy vet who served as a rescue swimmer and combat systems officer on two tours aboard the USS Dubuque. She’s also one of the thousands of military service members diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury. While not all TBIs are the same, her experience—shared here in her own words—offers a window into what it’s like, including how difficult it can be to get the right treatment.
Associated Press | Oct 26, 2018
Texas officials are requiring the state’s largest schools to report concussions suffered by high school athletes in a move seen as the nation’s biggest effort to track brain injuries among young athletes. The University Interscholastic League, Texas’ governing body for public high school sports, ordered schools to submit individual concussion reports. “This is the first of its kind quality-improvement program in the country, certainly the largest,” UIL Deputy Director Jamey Harrison said Tuesday.
AAP News & Journals | Oct 26, 2018
The topic of concussion gives many of us a headache, given the complexity of determining how to manage the problem acutely and over the long term. Ewing-Cobbs et al. (10.1542/peds.2018-0939) share with us a revealing prospective, longitudinal cohort study specifically focused on what factors influence a child or teen’s vulnerability to experiencing post-concussive symptoms and the duration of those symptoms.
Standford News | Oct 26, 2018
Teams of Stanford researchers in the Schools of Medicine, Engineering and Education and Stanford’s interdisciplinary life sciences institutes are working together to better understand what causes concussions, how to diagnose and treat them and, perhaps most important, how to prevent them from happening in the first place.
Investigate West | Oct 19, 2018
Morgan Brunner, 13, received a concussion when hit by a stray ball during warm-up for a game of futsal. Thanks to Jenna's Law, parents and coaches had received information about proper care and concussion protocols. Despite these success stories, there are still grey areas this law doesn't cover, lawmakers say.
USA Today | Oct 19, 2018

Pop Warner is giving its young charges a crash course in how to recognize concussions. Starting today, the organization will offer a concussion education initiative nationwide. CrashCourse is an interactive online program from software creator TeachAids in collaboration with Stanford University researchers in medicine, engineering and education. The program includes a short interactive film that puts the viewer on the field for a high school football game and a symptoms simulator to help young people recognize the signs of a concussion in themselves or in others.

UPI | Oct 18, 2018
A new study out of John Hopkins University suggests head injuries are far more widespread than estimated. About 1 in every 6 U.S. adults -- roughly 23 million people aged 40 or older -- have been knocked out by a head injury, researchers report. Those numbers are huge," said lead researcher Dr. Andrea Schneider, a neurologist with Johns Hopkins University. "Head injury in the United States is much more common than we thought."
ESPN | Oct 18, 2018

In recent years, the term "concussion protocol" has become such a part of the NFL lexicon that everyone refers to it — from players to coaches to those of us who cover the league to all the fans who watch. But how many of us could actually describe the different elements of the protocol? Or identify the roughly 30 medical personnel present at every game?

FOX 9 (MN) | Oct 18, 2018
Each injured veteran’s story is unique, and so is their ability to talk about them with their own kind of war paint. This fall, the Minnesota Brain Injury Alliance invited veterans to tell the stories of their injuries and recovery on blank canvases of a mask. The idea is to use paint and decorations to “unmask” their injuries.
WebMD | Oct 18, 2018

A year after a concussion, up to one-third of kids still have symptoms such as headache and irritability that may affect school performance, a new study from the University of Texas Health Science Center Medical School in Houston finds. "Children with all types of injuries may show post-concussion symptoms," said lead researcher Linda Ewing-Cobbs. Her team found as many as 31 percent still had symptoms that included inattention or fatigue 12 months after their head injury.

WABE (GA) | Oct 18, 2018
In a study published in July in the journal Nature, scientists who focus on cell regeneration at the University of Georgia reported successfully replicating some conditions of traumatic brain injuries in a petri dish — without using an actual human brain — allowing researchers new insight into the condition. “We thought of taking this out of the human being because that’s where complexity confounds things,” explained the study’s lead author, Lohitash Karumbaiah, an assistant professor at the Regenerative Bioscience Center in Athens.
Bleacher Report | Oct 18, 2018

NFL Chief Medical Officer Dr. Allen Sills said the league "did a targeted intervention" with seven teams in regard to concussions. Sills said those seven teams were identified to have more preseason concussions than their counterparts during the 2017 campaign. As a result, the league met with the football operations staffs of each team to discuss practice drills and types of helmets that may have contributed to the higher numbers.

BU Today | Oct 18, 2018

The National Academy of Medicine (NAM) is made up of more than 2,000 international members, elected by their peers, for outstanding achievements in medicine. Ann McKee, a School of Medicine professor of neurology and pathology, director of the Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy Center, and chief of neuropathology at the Boston VA Healthcare System, has been elected in recognition of the huge impact that her research on brain injuries in football players and military servicepeople has had on public health.

BBC News | Oct 15, 2018
A head injury not only left Byron Schofield physically and mentally scarred for life - it also set him on the path towards prison. Research by neuropsychologist Dr Ivan Pitman for the Disabilities Trust suggests that about half of the UK's adult male prison population may have suffered a brain injury. When asked what difference it would have made if Schofield had been admitted to a rehabilitation program to begin with, Ivan Pitman replied: "Without a shadow of a doubt Byron would not have committed that crime."
The Washington Post | Oct 15, 2018
In a forthcoming book, “Racing to the Finish,” Earnhardt goes into depth about his battle with vision problems, disorientation and mood swings that made him want to quit the sport one week, then jump in the racecar the next. He also discloses the secret journal he kept of his escalating symptoms, to ensure he had some way of telling his story.
The Washington Times | Oct 15, 2018
Scientists researching chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in athletes consider women to be a vulnerable demographic — but they need to be able to study more female brains to determine why. “We have large gaps in the number of women’s brains we’ve collected,” McKee said in a teleconference with reporters Thursday. “We need to know if there are gender differences in CTE, which we do suspect, but we don’t have evidence for it at this point.”
Yahoo! Sports | Oct 15, 2018
The brain of Kevin Ellison, the former USC safety who died last week while walking the I-5 freeway in Southern California, will be donated to a lab to further the study of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, a brain disease commonly suffered by football players. Ellison had suffered from bouts of mental instability, and his mother, Judy Reisner, said that those issues may have been caused by CTE.
The Aggie | Oct 15, 2018
Kassandra Ori-McKenney, an assistant professor in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, was recently announced as a Pew Biomedical Scholar. She has been awarded a four-year grant totaling $300,000 to study the role of the tau protein in the degeneration of neurons caused by traumatic brain injury (TBI). While part of the research involves studying the protein itself, another part of the research goes into monitoring the origin and spread of tau in the brains of flies with TBI, as well as the behavioral effects on the flies.
The New York Times | Oct 9, 2018
Daniel Te’o-Nesheim, who played four seasons in the N.F.L., was found dead at age 30 and later diagnosed with C.T.E. He left behind a paper trail of his struggles dealing with the injuries caused by playing the game he loved.

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