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Professional Athletes May Be Teaching Us The Hard Truths About Concussions

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I think back to all of the concussions that kids received as we played sports growing up. The advice was to wake them up a couple of times at night and maybe stay home for a day. How much long term damage was possible with the minimum care? Are early diagnosis of dementia really just under diagnosed injuries?

It seems like the medical profession is finally taking a serious look at the injury. Locally, the long term IR time for Justin Morneau of the Minnesota Twins, is hopefully being looked at my coaches of all levels. As Yahoo Sports pointed out:

After years of neglect due to ignorance, professional sports organizations are beginning to recognize that concussions – in simple terms, the brain rattling against the skull; more technically, the premature death of brain cells from trauma – are not only a threat to players’ health but the sports themselves. A group of Boston-area doctors concluded in a study released Tuesday that the after-effects of concussions can lead to considerable degeneration in a person’s brain function that manifests itself in the same fashion as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, better known as Lou Gehrig Disease, or ALS.

Others here at the Injuryboard have also looked at this issue:

Heads Up: Athlete Concussions May Lead to Serious Traumatic Brain Injuries,Mark Bello | September 01, 2010 11:57 AM

Link to NFL Concussion Poster, Michael Phelan | August 26, 2010 5:17 PM

NFL Concussion Poster A Must For All Locker Rooms, Michael Phelan | July 28, 2010 3:03 PM

Concussions in kids and teens, Melissa Landau | June 17, 2009 10:48 AM

US Lacrosse Confronts Concussion Epidemic, Michael Phelan | November 07, 2007 8:55 AM

There is still a lot that we don’t know about concussions and brain injuries. The key will be what we do with what we do know.