Tuesday, January 27, 2009

More evidence of a link
between football & brain injury

We have commented upon, and shared information regarding, the apparent link between playing football and suffering chronic brain injury, and now comes word of another player former player whose postmortem revealed signs of such injury.

According to a report from the New York Times, the brain of former Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive lineman Tom McHale, who died in May of 2008 at the age of 45, showed evidence of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) ~ a "progressive condition [that]results from repetitive head trauma and can bring on dementia in someone in their 40s or 50s."

According to the article, Mr. McHale is the sixth deceased player, between the ages of 36-50 when they died, whose brain has been studied by researchers at the Boston University School of Medicine. All six have exhibited signs of CTE.

Dr. Ira Casson, who has studied brain injury amongst players as part of an NFL supported study is quoted as saying that "there are many questions that still are out there as to whether there is a kind of traumatic encephalopathy associated with football. I think we don’t know. I think that there is not enough scientific evidence to say that there is."

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