MacArthur ‘genius’ tackles concussions in football
September 20, 2011, 5:30 a.m.
Since 1999, he has wired the helmets of about 700 college football players with accelerometers to study what kinds of hits result in concussions, which kinds of players get them, and what the long-term consequences of those brain injuries can be. He was among the first to find a strong link between multiple concussions and later dementia, depression and memory and intellectual deficits that often lead to Alzheimer’s disease.
When a 2005 report prepared for the NFL asserted that a player who had sustained a concussion could safely be returned to play on the same day, Guskiewicz begged to differ. In an interview on National Public Radio, he suggested that those drafting the NFL report “are more interested in trying to protect the game or the league rather than taking a more responsible approach.”
But by 2010, a lot had changed. A mountain of research — much of it by Guskiewicz but also by Boston University’s Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy — had made clear even to the most hard-core football fans that concussions could not just be “shaken off.” The military’s experience with widespread trauma among troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, and numerous cases of suicides and dementia among recently retired football heroes, underscored that “getting your bell run” several times was likely to have long-term repercussions.
- Concussion suits have NFL, ex-players on collision course (philly.com)
- At age 30, Randall Gay lives with concussion symptoms in retirement (profootballtalk.nbcsports.com)
- Ray Easterling, lead plaintiff in NFL concussion lawsuit, commits suicide (sports.yahoo.com)
- How Dangers of Head Injuries Paint Grim Reality for NFL Future (bleacherreport.com)
- Randall Gay retired from NFL because of concussions – NFL News (nfl.com)
- Jets’ Scott: ‘I don’t want my son to play football’ (tracking.si.com)
- More former professional football players file concussion lawsuits against the NFL – @cnnbrk (cnn.com)
- How Does Jamal Lewis’ Bankruptcy Claim Relate to His Concussion Lawsuit? (dawgpounddaily.com)
- Concussion Worries Filter Down From NFL To Youth Football Leagues (stlouis.cbslocal.com)
- Should parents let kids play? (nbcsports.msnbc.com)
- Warner, Hoge and concussion discussion (espn.go.com)