Study: Brain Damage Found In College Football Players Who Never Had Concussions



Concussions sustained on the football field and in other sports have been linked to brain trauma and a disease that can cause Alzheimer’s-like symptoms in athletes once their playing days are over.

A new study of college football players, however, suggests even in the absence of concussions, players may suffer long-term brain damage.

“Although the awareness of sports-related concussions is much higher, we still know very little about the long-term consequences and what happens inside the brain,” the study’s co-author Dr. Jeffrey J. Bazarian, associate professor of emergency medicine at the University of Rochester Medical Center in N.Y., said in a statement.

Researchers at the Cleveland Clinic and the University of Rochester collaborated on the study which looked at 67 college football players who suited up for the University of Rochester Yellowjackets, Baldwin Wallace University Yellow Jackets (of Berea Ohio) and John Carroll University Blue Streaks (in University Heights, Ohio). The researchers watched game tape of players to record the number of hits they received, and interviewed each player after the game to see if they had concussive symptoms. Players were assigned a score from zero to six based on the number of hits they endured.

Blood tests were also given to each players. Having a concussion during a game excluded players from the analysis, which made this study unique, lead researcher Dr. Damir Janigro, director of cerebrovascular research at Cleveland Clinic’s Lerner Research Institute, told CBSNews.com.

Leave a Reply