Researchers find new evidence regarding the potential effects that the game of football has on the brain. As reported in the Chicago Tribune, a study conducted by the Department of Veteran Affairs and Boston University shows an overwhelmingly large percentage of degenerative brain diseases among deceased National Football league (NFL) players.
The study included 165 post mortem brains, all of which were donated to the study by former players from the high school to the NFL level. Researchers examined the brains for known signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). The reported findings were as follows:
***Of the 91 deceased NFL players examined, 87 showed signs of CTE
***Of the 165 total deceased players examined, 131 showed signs of CTE
***Of the deceased NFL players examined, 96% tested positive for a degenerative brain disease
***Of the total deceased players examined, 79% tested positive for a degenerative brain disease
Researchers note that these findings are likely biased to some level because study participants donated their brains due to a suspicion of some brain injury. However, even considering the potential bias, they assert that the data shows a disturbingly high rate of CTE among football players.
The Debate Continues
The debate over the prevalence of brain injuries among football players continues, even with the vast amount of studies available. NFL players and the league have spent years hashing out a $1 billion settlement agreement regarding player concussions. Even though a settlement was reached, it is now facing more than 90 appeals from players who are concerned about future CTE diagnoses. Researchers assert that this study supports the argument that CTE is common enough among players to warrant coverage under the settlement agreement.
According to NFL reports, recorded concussions decreased by 25% between 2013 and 1014, with 111 less occurrences. This also represents a decline of 36% since 2012. As reported in the Chicago Tribune article, at two weeks into the 2015 season, 25 head injuries had been reported.
What is CTE?
As explained by Boston University’s CTE Center, Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy is a degenerative disease of the brain that progresses in its severity. It is commonly found in various athletes and other individuals who encounter repetitive trauma to the head. This may include varying levels of concussion. Symptoms of CTE include:
**Loss of memory
**Difficulty controlling impulses
**Increased, unreasonable aggression
**With the progression of age, the development of dementia
For the non-athlete, the takeaway from this research is the long term effect of traumatic brain injury. As a plaintiff in a brain injury lawsuit, you should not only consider the current symptoms of your injury. Depending on the severity of your TBI, you may become more susceptible to a CTE later in life. Securing compensation for future damages can prove challenging, so the assistance of an experienced attorney is vital.
If you are considering a brain injury lawsuit, contact the experienced attorneys of Levin & Perconti at (312) 332-2872 for a free consultation. These knowledgeable attorneys will aggressively work to secure the damage award to which you are entitled.