concussions

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greybeard58
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White Bear news

Post by greybeard58 » Thu May 10, 2018 3:43 pm

Parker’s brain trauma revealed to be ‘worse than we thought’
By Bruce Strand/Sports contributor May 9, 2018 Updated 21 hrs ago 0

The brain disease known as CTE was not discussed by the late Jeff Parker, at least not with his family.

However, when more became known about Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), a condition leading to the suffering and early demise of many pro football and hockey players, Parker’s younger brothers Scott and John took notice.

“Jeff never talked about CTE with us, but I’m sure he did with other people, when he joined the lawsuit,” said John, referring to action by former players against the National Hockey League.

“But my brother Scott started looking into it, and he said one day, ‘You know, I betcha Jeff has this.’ And when Jeff passed, they called and told us the CTE Foundation wanted to talk to us about donating Jeff’s brain.”

Last Thursday, medical researchers confirmed that Jeff Parker, White Bear Lake native whose NHL career was cut short by a dreadful concussion in 1991, and who died last September at age 53, was suffering from CTE, which can only be detected after death.

“It was worse than we thought,” said Scott Parker. “We knew all along that he was suffering, but he masked it pretty well. He must have been suffering a lot more than we knew.”

Parker had one of the most severe cases of CTE, according to medical records provided exclusively to 5 Eyewitness News and The New York Times.

Researchers at Boston University’s CTE Center announced that Parker had Stage 3 (out of 4) CTE, the same level of the disease that was found in the brain of former NFL star Aaron Hernandez, who was convicted of murder in 2015 and committed suicide in prison in 2017.

"Jeff Parker’s brain was at such a stage – the disease was taking over his brain,” Dr. Ann McKee said in a phone interview from Boston, as reported by Eyewitness News.

“It was just going to get worse and worse — It’s very substantial brain damage. The nerve cells weren’t working,” stated McKee, chief of neuropathology at Boston's VA hospital and director of the CTE Center.

Scott Parker, after viewing photographs that showed how massive the damage was, told the White Bear Press, “It was pretty sad for me and my brother John to see that. Pretty hard to fathom.

“Jeff rarely talked about it, only in his darkest times, but his head hurt. He compared it to a freight train going through his head.”

The Parker family — Scott, John, and parents Charlie Parker and Linda Wenzel — donated Jeff’s brain to the CTE Foundation, after getting a call from Brad Maxwell, president of the Minnesota NHL Alumni Association, who had relayed the request to them.

Besides Parker, at least six other NHL players have been found to have had CTE, according to the New York Times. They are Reggie Fleming, Rick Martin, Bob Probert, Derek Boogaard, Larry Zeidel and Steve Montador.

Parker was among approximately 150 former players who filed suit against the NHL, claiming that the league thrived on the violence but did little to warn players of the long-term effects. The NHL’s counter argument is that nobody understood the impact concussions could have back in those days, and that the players were given reasonable care given what was known at the time. At this stage, both sides are waiting for a federal judge to rule whether the lawsuit can proceed as a class action.

“When he joined the lawsuit, I’m sure he had conversations,” John Parker said. “When he went to Washington, I remember him saying how it affected him, the stories about other players who died before him, how hurt he felt about that. The reason he joined the lawsuit was to help the next guy. With Jeff, it was always about helping the next guy.”

Jeff Parker’s death was attributed to infection that attacked his heart and lungs. He had been suffering from pulmonary hypertension.

Hockey gave Parker a charmed life for the first half of his time on earth. He helped White Bear Mariner reach the state championship game in 1982 and was a leading player on Michigan State’s run to the 1986 NCAA championship. After some minor league time he moved on to the NHL, spending three seasons with Buffalo before being traded to Hartford.

His playing days ended with a gruesome hit in Hartford 1991, when his head struck the stanchion holding the glass to the boards, after a violent check by a 230-pound Washington defenseman. That was his second concussion in 15 days. There had been other concussions, including in the minor leagues, said Scott Parker.

The second half of his life, post-hockey, was a struggle. Parker reported suffering from constant ringing in the ears, headaches from bright lights, and decreased hearing and sense of taste. John Parker said that when Jeff tried to take classes, he had to give up, unable to read and concentrate. In his last few years, the former NHL player worked as a bartender in St. Paul, partly to avoid bright light.

All three brothers played high school and.college hockey, and all three won NCAA championships. Scott got his at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, John at UW – Madison.

Scott Parker, a longtime high school hockey coach in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin, was asked how he views player safety, in light of what happened to his older brother.

High school players are “watched very carefully,” he stressed, and their readiness to play after a hit is decided by team trainers, not coaches. He said players are repeatedly taught technique to avoid checking from behind. And above all, they get immediate attention from a trainer at any sign of trouble.

That last part is what haunts Jeff’s brothers, after what they learned about the aftermath of the severe hit in Hartford that night.

“They just put him down on the floor of the locker room,” Scott Parker said. “He did not receive any medical help. When he finally snapped to, he thought he was still playing for Buffalo. That’s how hard that hit was, and there was no immediate help.”

Scott Parker stressed that he and John still love hockey, and “Jeff would do it all over again” if he could.

“But that doesn’t mean I love the NHL. I’m sure the NHL has made changes, but they were not soon enough for my brother …. The NHL needs to take care of their boys; they’re the ones who made their owners a lot of money.”

John Parker was asked to talk about the old Jeff Parker again. He was happy to oblige.

“He was a big-hearted guy. People were attracted and drawn to him. For Scott and I, he was the golden boy. We wanted to be him. I would always hear about how kind he was to people, always with a big smile, a good guy, but tough as nails when he needed to be.”

Jeff Parker
Jeff Parker, shown here during his Buffalo Sabres days, died last September at age 53.

http://www.presspubs.com/white_bear/spo ... fa619.html

goldy313
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Post by goldy313 » Sun May 13, 2018 6:36 am

Meh.....nobody ever really thought brain injuries were normal.

Ex post facto is no longer relevant.

If you choose to smoke, text and drive, play contact sports....etc..?.maybe you have a better chance suing your parents, run track or xcountry, play tennis or golf.

greybeard58
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Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:40 am

Cassie Campbell-Pascall donates her brain

Post by greybeard58 » Fri May 18, 2018 7:14 am

Cassie Campbell-Pascall donates her brain

Three Olympians and a pioneer in women's hockey announce today that they are donating their brains to the Canadian Concussion Centre (CCC) to advance research on the effects of concussion in women. These are the first known female Canadian athletes to publicly pledge their brain to a Canadian research centre.

The women, all highly decorated athletes in their respective sports, are:

• Cassie Campbell-Pascall: Two-time Olympic gold medallist, Order of Canada, Order of Hockey in Canada recipient and Queens Diamond Jubilee recipient.
• Jen Kish: 2016 Olympic bronze medallist, 2015 Pan Am Games gold medallist, and 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens silver medallist as captain of the Canadian women's rugby sevens team.
• Kerrin Lee-Gartner: Olympic gold medallist and three-time Olympic team member in alpine skiing.
• Fran Rider: Competitive athlete and life-long advocate for the advancement of Female Hockey in the world, leading the drive for Olympic participation.

"The Canadian Concussion Centre is honoured to receive the commitment of brain donations from these legendary Canadian athletes and I applaud them for their decision," says. Dr. Charles Tator, director of the CCC. "Research is showing that concussions affect women differently than they do men, and our ability to analyse the changes that can occur in women's brains as a result of concussions will help us better understand and treat these injuries."

As individuals with their own concussion history, each athlete has expressed common hopes that this pledge will help advance the understanding of concussions, particularly among women:

"I wanted to be part of such a great group of women to donate my brain to the Canadian Concussion Centre to help with concussion research down the road," says Cassie Campbell-Pascall, the only Canadian captain, male or female, to lead a hockey team to two Olympic gold medals. "I loved playing sports and have no regrets, but having had some concussions I would like to make sure that future generations are protected as much as possible while still being able to play sports at all levels. I am also glad to be amongst this group, as we are the first to donate our brains to Canadian research and I am extremely proud of that."

"There are limits to the research that can be done on a brain of a living person; and a lot of the research has been primarily based on men," says Jen Kish, Canada's 2012 and 2013 women's sevens team Player of the Year. "I'm donating my brain in hopes that it will help with better evidence-based treatments and prevention strategies for traumatic brain injury, and give researchers an opportunity to compare a female brain to what they already know about a male brain. "

"I have been living with, and healing from, a brain injury suffered in a car accident in 2016. Of all the serious injuries, concussions and high speed falls I had as a ski racer, nothing has been as difficult to overcome as the challenges of post-concussion syndrome and the effect it has on my daily life," says Kerrin Lee-Gartner, the first Canadian in history to win an Olympic gold medal in downhill skiing. "I am therefore donating my brain to the Canadian Concussion Centre with the hope of helping future generations in the prevention and treatment of brain injuries."

"Dr. Charles Tator is an amazing person whose life-long work has saved and enriched the lives of countless individuals. His work and positive vision are leaving a powerful legacy for future generations," says Fran Rider, president of the Ontario Women's Hockey Association. "As a competitive hockey and fastball player for 35 years and a participant in multiple sports, I am honoured to donate my brain to science in support of the outstanding work done by medical researchers committed to safety in sport and in life."

The CCC comprises a group of 19 clinician and basic scientists, and is one of few research groups in the world to examine the entire spectrum of concussion disorders from acute injury to chronic illness including brain degeneration. Today's announcement also launches a partnership between the CCC and the international, U.S.-based non-profit PINK Concussions to direct Canadian women interested in donating their brains to research institutions in Canada.

"The CCC has learned a great deal from examining the brains of 44 professional athletes to date, however all of the donors were male," says Dr. Tator. "It is important to include women as part of this research."

This weekend, the CCC hosts its 6th Annual Concussion Symposium. A public forum on May 10, and presentations and discussions by leading concussion researchers on May 11 will highlight the consequences of concussions to the families involved. The forum, which is free and open to the public, features remarks by the family of Rowan Stringer and the father of former NHLer Paul Montador, both young athletes who lost their lives to the complications of concussions.


Four of Canada’s Most Decorated Female Athletes Donate Brains to Canadian Concussion Centre

http://www.uhn.ca/corporate/News/PressR ... entre.aspx

greybeard58
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Kyle's Story:

Post by greybeard58 » Fri May 18, 2018 7:20 am

Kyle's Story: Minnesota Family Raising Awareness about CTE | KSTP.com


http://kstp.com/news/kyles-story-minnes ... 728/?cat=1

Kyle's Story: Minnesota Family Raising Awareness about CTE | KSTP.com
Kyle missed most of ninth grade because of recurring headaches. The pounding resumed even after what seemed to be minor collisions or hits to the head. A football to the head while playing catch at a Halloween party led to headaches for 14 months. All totaled, he'd suffered at least 10 severe concussions from grade school into high school, his mother said.

"I know when people look at it now they are like 'Geez, you didn't handle that very well,'" Beth said. "But at that point we hadn't heard of a concussion protocol."

In college, Kyle's pain, depression and anxiety had become overwhelming. In 2015, he committed suicide in his dorm room at the age of 20. In a suicide note, he wrote that the concussions "altered" his life.

"He told me on multiple occasions, 'Something is wrong with my brain – there is something wrong with it,''' Beth said.

KSTP's 'Fighting Back' Investigation

Out of their grief, his parents became determined to find the answers that had eluded their son for so long – all in the hope to raise awareness for other parents whose children have suffered similar head injuries.

Beth and her husband Mike sent their son's brain to a Veterans Administration hospital in Boston, Mass., where researchers are studying the long-term impact of concussions and hits to the head.

An examination of Kyle's brain tissue revealed he had the early stages of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, or CTE.

He is one of the youngest people in the country to be diagnosed with the degenerative brain disease.

Researchers at the lab have diagnosed the disease – after death – in former professional football and hockey players, and veterans who have suffered repeated head trauma.

CTE, researchers say, is linked to symptoms that include memory loss, confusion, erratic behavior and personality changes – including depression and suicidal thoughts.

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS was granted rare access to the lab earlier this year where Dr. Ann McKee, director of Boston University's CTE Center, explained how brain donations from families like the Raarups have expanded their research to include non-professional athletes.

"I can never wrap my head around these young people that have this disease," Dr. McKee said in interview.

Watch that investigative report by clicking the dropdown below. Read the full story, video included, here.

Family of Late Minnesota Hockey Star Waiting for Results from CTE Lab
Kyle's diagnosis had finally provided his parents with an explanation for his struggles.

"We were just relieved," his mother said. "If we had known about CTE, it would have changed how we approached multiple concussions."

Beth and Mike say that they do not want Kyle's injuries and death to frighten other families whose children are playing contact sports.

"Other kids on his team, they got hit in the head but they didn't have that prolonged problem with it," Beth said.

Instead, they said they hope their son's struggle increases awareness of the potential consequences of repetitive head trauma.

"People need to know about it so we can look at long-term effects," Beth said as she held back tears. "You don't ever want this."

greybeard58
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CTE in the Female Brain Seminar

Post by greybeard58 » Sun May 20, 2018 8:10 am

CTE in the Female Brain Seminar

DESCRIPTION
CTE in the Female Brain:
Researching Answers for Women Athletes, Veterans and Brain Injury Survivors

DATE AND TIME
Wed, May 23, 2018
3:00 PM – 7:00 PM EDT


LOCATION
Mount Sinai Medical Center
1468 Madison Ave
Hatch Auditorium
New York, NY 10029

3:00 – 3:05 pm Welcome (Eric J. Nestler, MD, PhD)
3:05 – 3:10 pm Introduction to Pink Concussions (Katherine Price Snedaker, LCSW)
3:10 – 3:25 pm Systematic Review of TBI in Women (Yelena Goldin, PhD)
3:25 – 3:55 pm The PINK Panel moderated by Katherine Snedaker
“Freya” – Domestic Violence Survivor
Samantha – Sports Concussion
Harmony Allen – Military Service Injury
Natalie – Sports Concussion
Kimberly Archie – Motor Vehicle Accident

3:55 – 4:10 pm Case study: Neuropathology of CTE in Female with Autism (Patrick Hof, MD)
4:10 – 4:25 pm Clinical & Pathological markers of the Late Effects of TBI (K. Dams-O’Connor, PhD)
4:25 – 4:50 pm Plenary Speaker: Trisha Meili (the “Central Park Jogger”)
4:50 – 5:00 pm Break
5:00 – 5:10 pm Screening for TBI in Domestic Violence Shelters (K. Monahan, DSW, LCSW, LMFT)
5:10 – 5:25 pm Neuroimaging & Molecular Biomarkers of Repetitive Head Trauma (D. Dickstein, PhD)
5:25 – 5:40 pm Clinical trials for post-TBI PTSD (Greg Elder, MD & G. Perez-Garcia, PhD)
5:40 – 6:00 pm Panel discussion and Q&A (Sam Gandy, MD, PhD & all speakers)
6:00 – 7:00 pm Wine and cheese reception for audience and speakers

Sponsored by the Brain Injury Research Center at Mount Sinai (BIRC-MS) & the Friedman Brain Institute #Diverse Brains Initiative
If you would like to support this event with a donation, http://giving.mountsinai.org/birc
For more information about PINK Concussions, see http://www.PINKconcussions.com

Event info:
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/cte-in-the ... 5031391103

greybeard58
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Hockey Players Are the Next Frontier in Head Trauma Research

Post by greybeard58 » Fri May 25, 2018 5:56 pm

Hockey Players Are the Next Frontier in Head Trauma Research

“We can stop dilly-dallying and arguing about, is this a disease or is this my imagination?” she says. “There’s been a lot of blatant denial or obfuscation of the work. But now I think we’re at a point where, look, there’s a problem. We all know that. We need to work on solutions. Maybe that’s diagnosis during life, in young players especially so they can stop playing. Or we could identify how common this is in the hockey or football population.

“And if we can see it early, we have a much better chance of treating it or stopping it altogether.”

And for that, they need more brains.

Hockey Players Are the Next Frontier in Head Trauma Research
https://www.si.com/nhl/2018/05/07/cte-n ... ead-trauma

greybeard58
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Post by greybeard58 » Fri May 25, 2018 5:58 pm

Acute and chronic changes in myelin following mild traumatic brain injury

Preliminary research using mcDESPOT magnetic resonance imaging shows changes in the myelin content of white matter in the brain following mild traumatic brain injury. Myelin changes are apparent at the time of injury and 3 months afterward. For more details, see the article, "Prospective study of myelin water fraction changes after mild traumatic brain injury in collegiate contact sports, by Heather S. Spader, MD, and colleagues, published today in the Journal of Neurosurgery.

...When asked about the study, Dr. Spader replied, "We were surprised by the finding of increased myelin in the contact sports players compared with non-contact sports players at baseline and 3 months after injury. Using the mcDESPOT sequence, we can see that there is a remyelination process after an injury. The next question, however, is to determine if the increased myelin leads to the formation of a type of scar tissue that can cause disorganized signaling in the brain and which can eventually lead to an increased susceptibility to neurodegenerative disorders such as dementia.”

Acute and chronic changes in myelin following mild traumatic brain injury
Read more: https://medicalxpress.com/news/2018-04- ... matic.html

greybeard58
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“How you say things matter”

Post by greybeard58 » Fri May 25, 2018 6:01 pm

“How you say things matter”

Warmath said today’s student-athletes need to be told in plain language about the dangers of brain injury.

“How you say things matter,” she said. “If you soften something, it won’t be taken as seriously. If you want people to listen, you have to be willing to say what we know.”

Researchers are testing a new fact sheet and new education materials highlighting the negative consequences of failing to report a concussion, including “putting yourself at greater risk for dementia or other mental health problems later in life.”

Warmath said other messages being tested include: “If you choose not to report a concussion then you are potentially putting yourself at risk of death from a second concussion. You’re also potentially putting yourself at risk for not graduating or not getting the job you wanted or not being able to stay in a relationship.”

Wisconsin researcher: Sharpen warnings about brain injury
Read more: http://host.madison.com/ct/news/local/w ... #pq=3Saxji

greybeard58
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The lack of follow-up after a concussion is concerning

Post by greybeard58 » Mon May 28, 2018 6:28 pm

More than half of concussion patients seen at top-level trauma centers appear to fall off the radar shortly after diagnosis

Although millions of Americans suffer concussions each year, many aren't given information about traumatic brain injury or follow-up care, a new study finds.

"The lack of follow-up after a concussion is concerning because these patients can suffer adverse and debilitating effects for a very long time," said study lead author Seth Seabury.

"Even patients who reported experiencing significant post-concussive symptoms often failed to see a provider. This reflects a lack of awareness, among patients and providers, that their symptoms may be connected to their brain injury," Seabury added.

He’s director of a population health initiative at the University of Southern California Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics.

The findings, published online May 25 in JAMA Network Open, are based on a sample of 831 patients who went to a top-level trauma center with a concussion, or mild traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Of those, 47 percent said they were given educational materials about TBI when they were discharged. Forty-four percent said they saw a doctor or other health care professional in the three months after their injury.

Of 28 percent of patients whose CT scans showed they had a brain injury, about 40 percent did not see a health provider three months after discharge, the researchers reported.

In addition, about one-third of the patients had three or more moderate-to-severe concussion symptoms within three months, but only about half of those patients had a follow-up visit, the researchers found.

Although concussions are often labeled mild, that term can be misleading, the researchers pointed out. People can have significant symptoms after a concussion, including migraines, thinking issues, vision loss, memory loss, emotional distress or personality disorders.

Too many patients are being treated as if a concussion is a minor injury, study co-author Dr. Geoffrey Manley said in a journal news release.

"This is a public health crisis that is being overlooked. If physicians did not follow-up on patients in the emergency department with diabetes and heart disease, there would be accusations of malpractice," he said.

Manley is principal investigator of the ongoing Transforming Research and Clinical Knowledge in Traumatic Brain Injury study, or TRACK-TBI.

An estimated 3.2 million to 5.3 million Americans live with long-term health effects from a traumatic brain injury, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Moreover, TBIs accounted for 2.8 million emergency department visits in the United States in 2013, and more than $76 billion in direct and indirect costs.

"Everyone who falls off their bike, slips off their skateboard or falls down the steps needs to be aware of the potential risks of concussion," Manley said.

Seabury concluded that "the study shows that we need to give patients and doctors the tools to better identify who should be going in for follow-up care.”

Little Follow-Up for Many Concussion Patients
Read more: https://www.webmd.com/brain/news/201805 ... patients#1

greybeard58
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Post by greybeard58 » Thu May 31, 2018 11:36 pm

protecting children from risk

“The research is clear — when children participate in high-impact, high-contact sports, there is a 100 percent risk of exposure to brain damage and once you know the risk involved in something, what’s the first thing you do? You protect children from it.”

Children are Suffering Brain Injuries from Contact Sports—And Now Parents are Demanding Action
Read more: https://www.healthline.com/health-news/ ... football#3

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Post by greybeard58 » Sat Jun 09, 2018 2:48 pm

Athletes’ head injuries can provoke surprisingly long-lasting harm

Elite athletes are some of the strongest people in the world. They train day after day to prepare for national and international competitions. Many hope to stand on the Olympic podium with a gold medal. For every athlete who succeeds, though, many others are derailed by injury. And not all of those injuries will be visible.

But elite athletes are not the only ones at risk. Nearly 1 in 5 U.S. adolescents, for instance, have sustained a concussion. This is a particularly nasty type of head injury. The statistic comes from a new survey reported September 26 in the journal JAMA. And more than 1 in every 20 teens, its data show, reported having been concussed two or more times.

Affected athletes may not be able to compete again for weeks, months — even years. Indeed, scientists and doctors had long thought that concussed people could safely return to regular activities once their symptoms went away. New data now dispute that.

Stopping concussions before they happen may be the only way to prevent long-term damage to the brain and how it works. That’s the conclusion of the researchers behind these studies. And although anyone can sustain a head injury, athletes in many sports face a special risk. Among those most likely to incur a concussion are those who play football and hockey. Those taking part in the winter Olympic sports of snowboarding, skiing and bobsled also are at risk.

Particularly disturbing, new research shows that even without a concussion, head injuries can lead to long-term damage. They may even lead to a brain disease known as CTE.


Athletes’ head injuries can provoke surprisingly long-lasting harm
Even as symptoms from concussion and other injuries fade, brain impairments may last years
Read more: https://www.sciencenewsforstudents.org/ ... sting-harm

greybeard58
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Post by greybeard58 » Sun Jun 10, 2018 4:29 pm

Wonder why studies show many hockey players don't take concussions seriously?

When the National Hockey League announced in late 2011 that Hockey Hall of Famer Pat LaFontaine would star in a weekly documentary called Making of a Royal about his coaching of a Midget rep hockey team, the league promised an “unprecedented” series with behind-the-scenes footage.

The 24-part series about the Long Island, N.Y., Royals was shown on the NHL Network, NHL.com, and the NHL’s YouTube channel.

Episode nine covered the issue of brain injuries in hockey, a particularly noteworthy subject because LaFontaine’s 15-year NHL career ended due to post-concussion symptoms.

Six days before that five-minute Making of a Royal episode was posted on YouTube on Dec. 16, 2011, NHL vice-president of media relations Frank Brown ordered NHL video producer Ryan Bader to remove a section of LaFontaine’s comments about concussions.

“Once you get a concussion you are four to six times more likely to get another one – and it’s probably exponential from there,” LaFontaine said in a clip that was dropped from the show.

It wasn’t the only clip Brown asked to have removed.

“The closing quote from Pat LaFontaine about ‘A lot less mothers and fathers cringing, wondering when’s the next ambulance going out…’ MUST go,” Brown wrote in a Dec. 10, 2011, email to Bader.

Copies of Brown’s emails were included in a 256-page transcript of NHL public relations executive Gary Meagher’s Oct. 7, 2015, deposition in Toronto.

Meagher’s deposition was among more than 30 held in connection with the NHL concussion lawsuit, filed in a U.S. federal court in Minnesota in 2013.

Brown wasn’t deposed in connection with the NHL concussion lawsuit and Meagher said he didn’t know why his colleague demanded changes to the video.

“Why would Frank Brown from your communications group want that to be deleted from a video that was being produced by the NHL?” plaintiffs’ lawyer Mark Dearman asked.

“I don’t know the answer to that,” Meagher said.

Former NHLer Brendan Shanahan, then director of player safety for the league, also appeared in episode nine of Making of a Royal.
Brown also asked for an edit of Shanahan’s interview clips.

At one point, Shanahan said, “There’s a tremendous amount of peer pressure if you’ve got a banged up shoulder or a banged up knee, it’s sort of like, ‘Look, your ankle will heal over the summer, get through this, for us.’ But I think when there’s a head injury, the brotherhood wants to come together and protect the guy with that head injury.”

Brown ordered Bader to cut the rest of Shanahan’s quote where he said, “This might not end over the summer … it might affect him for the rest of his life … might end his career.”

Brown wrote, “THE FOLLOWING MUST BE DELETED” about another clip of the video that showed Shanahan on the ice in an NHL game “looking up/dazed.”

All professional sports leagues and companies, of course, are in the business of trying to shape a favourable opinion in the public eye. And yet with a high-profile concussion lawsuit being argued in a U.S. federal court, that is especially so for the NHL, whose executives paid close attention to the LaFontaine series to remove any commentary that might be considered negative or controversial.

“It’s our job as communications people to promote our league, to promote our game,” Meagher testified during his deposition in Toronto.
The depositions show that the league’s efforts to gauge and help shape public and media opinion about issues such as fighting, head hits and violence in hockey were ongoing long before the concussion lawsuit was filed.

NHL knocks out hard-hitting concussion comments
Read more: https://www.tsn.ca/nhl-knocks-out-hard- ... -1.1099155

Chris Nowiski: “Wonder why studies show many youth, high school and collegiate hockey players don't take concussions seriously? New evidence reveals NHL has been silencing legends like Pat LaFontaine and Brendan Shanahan, preventing concussion advice from reaching the public.”

greybeard58
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What Happens To A Brain When It Gets Rattled

Post by greybeard58 » Sat Jun 16, 2018 8:20 pm

What Happens To A Brain When It Gets Rattled

But mostly I think about that pale pink organ, the consistency of soft tofu, enclosed in leathery tissue and bone and shiny helmet, slamming directly into the container of its safe keeping. And I wonder if it’s worth it.

What Happens To A Brain When It Gets Rattled
Read more: https://deadspin.com/what-happens-to-a- ... 1820189649

greybeard58
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Post by greybeard58 » Sat Jun 16, 2018 8:27 pm

Research uncovers new link between head trauma, CTE, and ALS

That’s good news for Maria Baier McCauley, whose husband Chris died of ALS in August.

McCauley played high-level hockey for more than a decade, first with the London Knights and the Western Mustangs, and later in professional leagues in Europe. He suffered five or six concussions along the way, so when he was diagnosed in 2015 with ALS, he wondered whether his repeated brain injuries played a role.

His widow says McCauley would be glad to know that advances are being made into the understanding of ALS and brain trauma.

“He would be excited to know that they are making links that that would bring them closer to a treatment, or to prevention,” Baier McCauley told CTV News.
She says the Western research “points to the considerable risk to concussions, especially in younger kids” – something she says her husband worried about.

“Young brains are vulnerable, and that was a big concern for Chris,” she said.
She added she hopes this research helps lend support to the warnings about head blows in hockey and prompts changes to the game.

Research uncovers new link between head trauma, CTE, and ALS
Read more: https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/research- ... -1.3760399

greybeard58
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Concussion study may ‘change the game’

Post by greybeard58 » Sat Jun 16, 2018 8:32 pm

Concussion study may ‘change the game’
Researchers have identified evidence of early chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) brain pathology after head impact -- even in the absence of signs of concussion. Early indicators of CTE pathology not only persisted long after injury but also spread through the brain, providing the best evidence to date that head impact, not concussion, causes CTE.

The findings, published online in the journal Brain, help to explain why approximately 20 percent of athletes with CTE never suffered a diagnosed concussion. The findings were based on analysis of human brains from teenagers with recent head injury, animal experiments that recreate sports-related head impact and military-related blast exposure, and computational models of the skull and brain during these injuries.

"Even with a low magnitude impact, one that wouldn’t rip or tear brain tissue, shearing can disrupt small blood vessels, nerve fibers and chemical channels in the brain.”

CTE is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by abnormal accumulation of tau protein around small blood vessels in the brain. CTE causes brain cell death, cognitive deficits and dementia. CTE pathology has been observed in brains of teenagers and adults with exposure to repeated head injury. However, the mechanisms that cause CTE and their relationship to concussion, subconcussive injury and traumatic brain injuries (TBI) like CTE remain poorly understood.

“Concussion appears to be distinct from CTE,” said William Moss, LLNL physicist and co-author on the paper. “This could be game changing. It means that we may need more than a concussion protocol to protect athletes.”

CTE has been observed in the brains of teenagers and adults with exposure to repeated head injury, both concussive and subconcussive episodes. A recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association by other co-authors of this paper found signs of the neurodegenerative disease in 99 percent of the brains donated by families of former NFL players, in 91 percent of college football players and 21 percent of high school players.

Moss and computational engineer Andy Anderson joined a team of more than 40 researchers led by Dr. Lee Goldstein, Boston University School of Medicine. The Livermore team used computational modeling to understand why both impact and blast triggered CTE but only impact resulted in concussion. This surprising result uncoupled concussion and CTE and suggested different mechanisms leading to each.

Surprising observation and a eureka moment
Researchers began by examining four postmortem brains from teenage athletes who had sustained head-impact injuries just prior to death and comparing these brains to age-matched control brains. Analysis showed a spectrum of post-traumatic pathology, including one case of early-stage CTE and two cases with abnormal accumulation of tau protein. Brains from the control group did not show these pathological changes.

Then they tested the effects of a blast versus impact in animal experiments designed to produce identical motions of the head. Both loading mechanisms showed strong causal evidence linking head acceleration to TBI and early CTE, but there was one striking difference: Impact caused concussion but blast didn’t. These observations suggested that concussion and CTE might be unrelated.

“That result was very surprising,” Anderson said. “So, Willy [Moss] and I turned to supercomputer simulations to take a closer look.”

Moss has spent nearly a decade simulating how blast and impact interact with the skull and brain. Before partnering with Goldstein, his research focused on helmet pads, comparing the effectiveness of combat and football pads in protecting the brain from the effects of impact.

While it was impossible for Goldstein to design an experiment that could explain the surprising observation, the Livermore computational simulations provided Moss and Anderson a glimpse into why impact caused concussion while blast didn’t.

“We first looked at pressure fields and didn’t see anything surprising going on,” Moss said. “Then we looked at shear stress and saw a clear difference. We suspected we were on to something important. When I shared the results with Lee, he had a eureka moment: ‘Willy, I think you may have uncovered the cause of concussion.’”

In a blast, the pressure wave flows fairly uniform around the head. In an impact, the pressure is loaded through a more focused point. Even with a low magnitude impact, one that wouldn’t rip or tear brain tissue, shearing can disrupt small blood vessels, nerve fibers and chemical channels in the brain.

“All this takes place in less than a millisecond,” Moss said. “The concussion occurs before there is any significant head motion.”

The simulations were completely consistent with the experimental data, and the result proved crucial for the research team, helping them conclude that the force-loading mechanism (impact versus blast) at the time of injury shapes the effect on the brain, and confirming that the mechanisms that cause concussion are distinct from those that lead to CTE.

These findings have direct relevance for athletes and military veterans. This study provides the best evidence to date that the neurodegenerative disease is triggered by repeated neurotrauma, not concussion.

“Our findings provide strong causal evidence linking head impact to TBI and early CTE, independent of concussion,” Goldstein said. “To prevent the disease, you have to prevent head impact – it’s hits to the head that cause CTE.”

"Even with a low magnitude impact, one that wouldn’t rip or tear brain tissue, shearing can disrupt small blood vessels, nerve fibers and chemical channels in the brain.”

Concussion study may ‘change the game’
Read more: https://www.llnl.gov/news/concussion-st ... hange-game

greybeard58
Posts: 1764
Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:40 am

Kyle's Story:

Post by greybeard58 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 12:01 am

One of the youngest people in the country to be diagnosed with the degenerative brain disease

Kyle's Story: Minnesota Family Raising Awareness about CTE | KSTP.com

Kyle missed most of ninth grade because of recurring headaches. The pounding resumed even after what seemed to be minor collisions or hits to the head. A football to the head while playing catch at a Halloween party led to headaches for 14 months. All totaled, he'd suffered at least 10 severe concussions from grade school into high school, his mother said.

"I know when people look at it now they are like 'Geez, you didn't handle that very well,'" Beth said. "But at that point we hadn't heard of a concussion protocol."

In college, Kyle's pain, depression and anxiety had become overwhelming. In 2015, he committed suicide in his dorm room at the age of 20. In a suicide note, he wrote that the concussions "altered" his life.

"He told me on multiple occasions, 'Something is wrong with my brain – there is something wrong with it,''' Beth said.

Out of their grief, his parents became determined to find the answers that had eluded their son for so long – all in the hope to raise awareness for other parents whose children have suffered similar head injuries.

Beth and her husband Mike sent their son's brain to a Veterans Administration hospital in Boston, Mass., where researchers are studying the long-term impact of concussions and hits to the head.

An examination of Kyle's brain tissue revealed he had the early stages of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, or CTE.

He is one of the youngest people in the country to be diagnosed with the degenerative brain disease.

Researchers at the lab have diagnosed the disease – after death – in former professional football and hockey players, and veterans who have suffered repeated head trauma.

CTE, researchers say, is linked to symptoms that include memory loss, confusion, erratic behavior and personality changes – including depression and suicidal thoughts.

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS was granted rare access to the lab earlier this year where Dr. Ann McKee, director of Boston University's CTE Center, explained how brain donations from families like the Raarups have expanded their research to include non-professional athletes.

"I can never wrap my head around these young people that have this disease," Dr. McKee said in interview.

Kyle's diagnosis had finally provided his parents with an explanation for his struggles.

"We were just relieved," his mother said. "If we had known about CTE, it would have changed how we approached multiple concussions."

Beth and Mike say that they do not want Kyle's injuries and death to frighten other families whose children are playing contact sports.

"Other kids on his team, they got hit in the head but they didn't have that prolonged problem with it," Beth said.

Instead, they said they hope their son's struggle increases awareness of the potential consequences of repetitive head trauma.

"People need to know about it so we can look at long-term effects," Beth said as she held back tears. "You don't ever want this.”

Kyle's Story: Minnesota Family Raising Awareness about CTE | KSTP.com
Watch the video: http://kstp.com/news/kyles-story-minnes ... e/4886728/

greybeard58
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Kyle Raarup played hockey in Minnesota

Post by greybeard58 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 12:02 am

Kyle Raarup played hockey in Minnesota

Kyle Raarup
September 24, 1995 - November 12, 2015

Kyle loved all sports, all his life. He played as much and as many sports as he possibly could, with football and hockey being his favorites. He was a fiercely competitive and driven athlete. He was naturally gifted with speed, agility, and great eye-hand coordination. He was a running back for football, offensive player in hockey, and could play any position he was put in for baseball. Kyle loved it all and loved the friendships that playing sports offered him.

As it is with any dedicated athlete, Kyle was hit many times with only minor injuries. Concussions, in our mind, happened when you got knocked out from a hit, or got your "bell rung". As the injuries continued and we became more informed about concussions we realized that Kyle had suffered many minor concussions from about 4th grade on. It wasn't until Kyle was in 8th grade and experienced a check from behind into the boards in hockey when he started having lasting symptoms that we could not control. He waited the recommended two weeks before playing again, only to be hit from behind again when he returned to play. This time he had such severe headaches and other symptoms that he was unable to return to sports or school. Each bump to his head after that caused increasingly severe symptoms for an extended amount of time.

Over the years of seeing innumerable doctors and other medical professionals, Kyle was diagnosed with post concussive syndrome. While it was nice to have a name for what he was going through, Kyle wanted something that would help his symptoms. This seemed to be an elusive goal. He was a trooper and tried every therapy, testing, medication, vitamin, whatever we could find to try to alleviate the pain and memory/thinking difficulties he was experiencing. None worked well, which was a source of great frustration to Kyle. He wanted his brain to go back to normal.

Kyle was able to attend college where he flourished with the assistance of the student services program that allowed him accommodations for his anxiety and inability to handle a lot of sensory input during testing. Kyle loved college and the friends he made there. He was outgoing, cheerful, energetic, and fun to be around. His continued struggles with his anxiety/depression, memory problems and a new stomach ailment overwhelmed him and he took his life on 11/12/15. His brain was donated to the Boston University CTE study in order to find out the answer to his nagging question "what's wrong with my brain and why can't it be fixed?"

In December 2016, we found out that Kyle was diagnosed with Stage I CTE along with some brain abnormalities (micro hemorrhages and hippocampus damage) that helped his family get some answers to that nagging question of "what was going on in his brain?" His suicide and the Boston University brain study has helped raise awareness in our community of the lasting impact that concussions can have on the life of a young adult. The loss of a child, brother and friend to many has hit us all hard and will be something that we struggle with for a long time. We are grateful to the Concussion Legacy Foundation for their research and to finally give us some answers, and for their efforts to continue to find answers for future athletes. Kyle would be proud to be a part of this important research and the continued efforts made to understand the devastating affects concussions have on young lives.

We miss him every day, but are proud of who Kyle was and how he has helped us and others understand mental illness and concussions.

By Kayla, Tyler, Mike and Beth Raarup
Read more: https://concussionfoundation.org/story/kyle-raarup

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Post by goldy313 » Sat Jun 23, 2018 6:27 am

The conventional wisdom is to no longer allow tackle football until the age of 14. Given that Rochester just dropped the age they allow tackle from age 9 to age 8. 3rd grade.

Money triumphs common sense.

The Supreme Court ruling sports gambling a state issue may save the NFL, but much like boxing declining participation at the youth level will decide the sports fate. FWIW I am a major fan of boxing and suffer from its drop in culture popularity.

greybeard58
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Former Faribault Hockey Player

Post by greybeard58 » Sun Jun 24, 2018 4:11 pm

Lexus Tatge

She also suffered her seventh concussion as a freshman on the Pipers’ hockey team, so the decision to hang up the skates was made clear…

QUICK LEARNER: Tatge thrives at Hamline as a lacrosse newcomer
http://www.southernminn.com/faribault_d ... a31fd.html

greybeard58
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Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:40 am

Kaitlyn Spillane concussion

Post by greybeard58 » Sun Jun 24, 2018 4:14 pm

Kaitlyn Spillane concussion

Kaitlyn Spillane

While Kaitlyn has battled a concussion for much of the back half of the season, and Ryan is still just a sophomore, the one thing that's certain is that even after Saint Anselm, the Spillanes will still be in hockey. It's in their blood.

"Maybe something like coaching (in the future)," Ryan said. "We both love hockey so much that we want to keep it a part of our lives.”

Siblings find hockey home at St. A's
Read more: http://www.unionleader.com/article/2018 ... /180209683

greybeard58
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TBI can be a chronic, evolving, and lifelong disorder

Post by greybeard58 » Sun Jun 24, 2018 4:18 pm

TBI can be a chronic, evolving, and lifelong disorder


Traumatic brain injury (TBI) can have lifelong and dynamic effects on health and wellbeing. Research on the long-term consequences emphasises that, for many patients, TBI should be conceptualised as a chronic health condition. Evidence suggests that functional outcomes after TBI can show improvement or deterioration up to two decades after injury, and rates of all-cause mortality remain elevated for many years. Furthermore, TBI represents a risk factor for a variety of neurological illnesses, including epilepsy, stroke, and neurodegenerative disease.

The chronic and evolving neurological consequences of traumatic brain injury
Read more: http://www.thelancet.com/journals/laneu ... X/fulltext

greybeard58
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Concussed Teen Hockey Players Back On Ice Too Soon?

Post by greybeard58 » Sun Jun 24, 2018 4:23 pm

Concussed Teen Hockey Players Back On Ice Too Soon?
MRI-detectable neuronal changes suggest persistent white matter damage

by Kristin Jenkins, Contributing Writer, MedPage Today
October 25, 2017

Action Points
Boys 11 to 14 years of age who sustained concussion while playing hockey showed signs of brain injury that persisted long after clinical scores returned to normal, researchers said.

Analysis of adolescent hockey players examined 24 to 72 hours after a diagnosis of concussion and again at 3 months revealed acute clinical deficits in thinking, memory and balance as well as structural and metabolic changes to the brain compared to controls, according to Ravi S. Menon, PhD, of the University of Western Ontario, London, Canada, and colleagues.

Clinical composite scores shot up immediately after concussion but returned to control levels within 24 days on average, the study authors reported online in Neurology.

After 3 months, however, changes seen on longitudinal multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) persisted, including diffusion abnormalities within several white matter tracts, functional hyperconnectivity, and 10% decreases in choline levels.

This meant that many players who had sustained concussion were back out on the ice with connectivity changes, diffusion-related white matter abnormalities, and metabolite decreases in the prefrontal white matter. That may have left them more vulnerable to second concussions and potential long-term neurodegenerative consequences.

"It is possible that returning to play may affect the brain and any ongoing neuroreparative mechanisms," the researchers said, noting that 3 months may not be enough recovery time in the concussed adolescent brain. That players were cleared to play at different times is a limitation of the study, they noted.

The most common mechanism of injury was a fall that resulted in a blow to the back of the head. "t is critical to understand how and when the adolescent human brain reacts and recovers from concussion," Menon said in a statement. "Current thinking, memory and balance testing may not be sensitive enough. These players were back on the ice when our study suggests their brains still needed time to heal."

More longitudinal studies are needed to understand the impact of age on concussion recovery time, potential increased risk of another concussion, and possible long-term consequences such as chronic traumatic encephalopathy, the study authors emphasized.

"This adolescent population may be particularly vulnerable to injury while axons continue to myelinate and mature, and our results suggest that they may require longer recovery periods," Menon and colleagues wrote. "The consequences of early brain injury for ongoing brain development and risk of more serious conditions such as second impact syndrome or neural degenerative processes need to be elucidated."

All 17 concussed hockey players in the study were recruited from Bantam hockey leagues, which allow body checking. During a six-month hockey season, the players practiced twice a week and played at least one game a week. The control group consisted of 26 non-injured players matched for age with similar practice and game schedules.

Analysis included clinical measures on thinking, memory, and balance testing, and a MRI scan. Diffusion metrics, resting-state network [RSN] and region-to-region functional connectivity patterns, as well as magnetic resonance spectroscopy absolute metabolite concentrations were analyzed. At 3 months, 14 injured players underwent a follow-up MRI assessment.

"Given this multiparametric MRI dataset, we were able to directly relate resting-state (RS-fMRI) changes with underlying structural abnormalities through diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), brain metabolic changes through magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS), and acute clinical deficits," the study authors said.

The largest decreases in diffusivity measures, which correlated significantly with clinical deficits, were seen in a large region along the superior longitudinal fasciculus, the analysis showed. "This region also spatially intersected with probabilistic tracts connecting cortical regions where we found acute functional connectivity changes," the study authors said.

Only players with less severe clinical outcomes had evidence of hyperconnectivity patterns 3 months after concussion diagnosis. They also had higher concentrations of choline, and "diffusivity indicative of relatively less axonal disruption."

Three months after concussion, significant increases in connectivity were seen in the occipital pole visual network and cerebellar network compared to controls. There were also significant increases in connectivity with the sensorimotor network and cerebellar network at 3 months compared to 24-72 hours post-concussion.

This pattern has been demonstrated in previous studies of alterations in resting-state brain networks in concussed adolescent athletes. It suggests that hyperconnectivity is involved in recovery and compensation for underlying white matter disruption, the study authors said.

Diagnosing concussion can be difficult since "each patient experiences unique trauma and cellular responses to the event," Philip E. Stieg, MD, PhD, of Weill Cornell Brain and Spine Center in New York City, told MedPage Today.

"This is an interesting paper that highlights the known increased concussion risk children have," said Stieg, who was not affiliated with the study.

His only concern with the current study was its methodology, which raised the risk of false positives by combining data statistically from multiple patients. "We need to do baseline imaging on athletes and follow them longitudinally," he said.

This study was funded by the Children's Health Foundation, the Western University Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. Menon reported a relationship with Siemens Healthcare and Siemens Healthineers. Co-author Timothy J. Doherty, MD, PhD, reported a relationship with Allergan Canada, and co-author Gregory A. Dekaban, PhD, reported a relationship with NSE BioCanRx. No other potential conflicts of interest were reported.

Reviewed by Robert Jasmer, MD Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco and Dorothy Caputo, MA, BSN, RN, Nurse Planner

https://www.medpagetoday.com/neurology/headtrauma/68796

greybeard58
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Hockey? It’s biology here; We need to talk

Post by greybeard58 » Mon Jul 02, 2018 6:57 pm

Hockey? It’s biology here; We need to talk.’
BY MHAIRI DOBBIN ON JUNE 27, 2018 • ( 1 COMMENT )
Concussion comparisons. http://tortstoday.blogspot.com/2014/09/ ... s.html?m=1

Rick Rypien. Wade Belak. Derek Boogaard. Steve Montador. Top line athletes, that all died at the height of their careers. Hockey is an intense sport, physically and mentally. With the current scale of the NHL, the need to perform consistently and flawlessly must be intense. Pressure can lead to stress, fatigue; isolation and travelling can lead to depression. It’s no wonder that the NHL has one of the worst cocaine problems in professional sport.


In 2009, a fierce battle with depression forced Paul Ranger to walk away from Tampa Bay and the NHL, citing ‘personal reasons’ at the time:

“You know there’s an old saying, the light’s at the end of the tunnel, right? I could no longer see the light. It was gone.”

Paul Ranger, January 2018, in an interview with TSN’s Darren Dreger.

And a heartbreaking read in the Players Tribune in 2017 saw Corey Hirsch detail his struggles with OCD and suicidal thoughts:

“…as soon as I got back to my locker after a game, the cycle would start all over again.

Hammering, hammering, hammering.

Darkness. Disgust. Shame. Anxiety.

I had no idea where to even begin looking for help.”

Enforcers seem to be understandably vulnerable; Derek Boogaard’s family attribute his overdose to the chronic pain caused by repeated head trauma. On paper, he had 3 serious concussions in his career. However, when told by a doctor that ‘a concussion is when you get hit in the head and black out for a minute…like “Whoa, what just happened?”‘. He responded that if that was the case, he must have had hundreds. (John Branch, ‘Boy On Ice: The Life and Death of Derek Boogaard’)

Daniel Carcillo, ex Blackhawk, has announced this week that he is suing the NHL. He cites depression, anxiety, moodswings, slurred speech and problems sleeping, amongst his host of symptoms that he believes to have been caused by repetitive brain injuries. He states that information was ‘witheld’ from him during his time in the league, and that the people running the NHL need to ‘step up’ and provide specialised care to protect the ‘best athletes in the world’. (Daniel Carcillo, speaking to Players Tribune in 2018)

So, does hockey attract the depressed and the vulnerable, or is professional hockey poor for mental health? On one hand, ice hockey is renowned for a sense of family and community – people could be seeking out that security from a fanbase, leading to a skewed population density. On the other, high speed collisions and knocks to the head can lead to various mood disturbances, as well as other symptoms (more on that later).

In short, I don’t have an answer for you (however, it would be interesting to see levels of depression and mental ill-health compared across multiple sporting organisations). Maybe it’s even got nothing at all to do with hockey – after all, depression is the most common mental illnesses worldwide. It could just be that athletes are human, and so are susceptible to human illnesses.

It’s a question that is far, far above my pay grade. I’m sure there’s real research in the subject out there (I’ve left some links at the end if you’re interested). However, while we’re here, let’s look at things at a surface level.

What sets ice hockey apart from all other sports?

Concussions.

In 2011, Sidney Crosby received a blow to the head that put him out of action for almost 2 seasons. At the time, there were comments on fan forums, calling him a cry baby, ‘he needs to man up’, its just a bump to the head, right?

A concussion is a traumatic brain injury that affects brain function. The are primarily caused by large blows to the head, which causes the brain to shake inside the skull, releasing electrical and chemical signals inside the brain. Cellular damage causes neurones to demand more energy to function, and cease communicating with each other – which causes the difficulties in thinking, movement, etc.

Imagine holding a glass of water driving down the motorway, and then doing an emergency stop. The water would be all over you, the floor, the seat – the force of the sudden stop would spill it everywhere. Your brain acts a bit like that in a concussion – however there’s nowhere for it to go. It’s contained within the skull, and that bouncing around is what causes the symptoms of a concussion – ranging from dizzyness to loss of memory, vision problems and unconsciousness.

One of the reason concussions are causing such a problem for professional sport is that they are hard to diagnose, and rely on the injured person self reporting their injury. If an athlete has a suspected broken leg, there’s physical signs of a broken leg. There will be bruising, the leg will look broken. It can be X-rayed to confirm the magnitude of the break, the location. It can be put in a cast, physiotherapy can assist in mobility. With concussions, treatment options are much more limited. However, the recievement of those treatments relies on the injuried part reaching out and saying they are injured. The pressure to perform could be preventing athletes form speaking out – which can put them at risk of further damage. Interestingly, the sport with the highest reported level of concussions is Women’s Ice Hockey, with almost double the reported number of incidences. This is strange – most women’s ice hockey is non checking, afterall. This discrepancy could be due to men being less likely to talk about how they feel, particularly in regards to health – as backed up by depression statistics comparing sexes

Symptoms can range from unpleasant to severe, thankfully most cases only last for days to weeks. However, repeated concussions can lead to further complications, including a condition known as Chronic Traumatic Encephalography, or CTE. Symptoms are much more severe, including mood instability, balance problems, slurred speech and difficulty thinking, over long periods of time. Additionally, three or more major concussions increases the risk of developing disorders such as Parkinson’s Disease, early onset Alzheimers and Dementia by 80%.

Okay, but lots of fast sports are high contact. So why does this problem seem particularly prevalent in ice hockey?

Firstly, the sport isn’t just fast. American Footballers also have a problem with concussions, their players collide often, running at full speed. However, hockey players are moving faster, and so can hit harder, causing more damage.

On top of the increased force, players collide with that force frequently, plus boarding is a valid concern, plus fights are more common in hockey. A top of the line professional boxer will fight 2-3 times per year – as much as the ‘Goon’ role seems to be dying out, enfourcers and ‘tough-guys’ can see upwards of 20 fights a season. If we minimise the risk to boxers by limiting their fights, how can we protect our hockey fighters? (If you’re interested, I recommend the 2016 documentary Ice Guardians for more information on the risks of the enforcer role.)

With increased knowledge and research, athletes are becoming faster, stronger; they can jump father, hit harder. These leaps and bounds are great for the sport – but evolution simply cannot catch up. Techniques and equipment are developing much faster than biology can – leaving athletes at risk

So what can we do?

Again, I don’t have a full answer. Whilst this is a problem affecting all sports, I personally believe the NHL needs to take steps to protect its athletes. The National Football League has a sideline concussion test; if a player recieves a blow to the head, tests are performed for balance and cognitive ability – to return to play, the must have no symptoms concurrent with brain injury. The NHL policy simply insists that a player is examined by a team doctor – causing controversy, as the doctor is not working independently.

At a grass roots level, players (and fans) need to be educated on what a concussion is, the symptoms, the risks. We need to treat brain injuries as seriously as strains and fractures. I’ve said many times in this article, I don’t have the answers. But our only hope of finding them lie in transparency and collaboration between those running the show, and the players they represent.

For anyone looking for help but doesn’t know where or how to start, here’s some resources, consider this a sign.

UK – Samaritans – 166 123

Scotland – 0800 83 85 87

Canada – https://suicideprevention.ca/need-help/

USA – 1-800-273-8255

https://chasingthepuck.com/2018/06/27/h ... d-to-talk/

greybeard58
Posts: 1764
Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:40 am

Free Conversation about Concussions & CTE

Post by greybeard58 » Mon Jul 02, 2018 7:00 pm

Free Conversation about Concussions & CTE

DESCRIPTION
Please join us for an intimate conversation with Sports Innovation Lab Co-Founder and CEO Angela Ruggiero as she discusses research and promising technologies in the fight against concussions & CTE with Concussion Legacy Foundation Co-Founders Dr. Chris Nowinski and Dr. Robert Cantu.

DATE AND TIME
Tue, July 17, 2018
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM EDT

LOCATION
WeWork 200 Portland
200 Portland Street
3rd Floor
Boston, MA 02114

Register at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/a-conversa ... 7315485892

greybeard58
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Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:40 am

Everyone who works in the rinks have seen things like this

Post by greybeard58 » Mon Jul 02, 2018 7:06 pm

Everyone who works in the rinks have seen things like this

The brain is the human body’s most important organ. Yet concussions remain one of the most prevalent issues across all levels of hockey. The failure of parents and coaches to recognize concussions at a young age could be the reason athletes feel they can play through head injuries.

...A few weeks ago I worked as a colour commentator at a hockey tournament that featured some of the best players aged 10-11 across the world. These kids were outstanding talents. It was an invite-only tournament and featured children from Sweden, Russia, the Czech Republic, the United States, and Canada.

In one game a certain play caught my attention – two players on the same team collided full speed at the blue line. The principal point of contact was the head, and one player also made contact with his head on the ice. He was down for a little while and then was helped off the ice by his teammate.

This seemed like the right thing to do - it would give him a chance to get looked at and have the extent of his injury determined. There were roughly 30 seconds left in the second period, and there were no lengthy intermissions at the tournament. Yet somehow the player returned before the start of the third.

During his next shift, it was apparent that he was a step slower than he had been before the collision. He tripped another player and the momentum from lunging forward sent him barrelling into the boards, he came up favouring his head.

As he sat in the penalty box he removed his helmet and his gloves, and began crying, holding the side of his head.

Now, I’m by no means a medical expert, but I didn’t need to be to see that he was - at the very least - showing concussion-like symptoms and he probably should have been pulled out of the game.

When he returned to the bench, the coaches said nothing to him. His mom came down and attempted to pull him out of the game. The coaches refused, and she relented.

This sort of mentality speaks to hockey as a whole. We put so much focus on injuries occurring a pro level that we ignore those that happen when the players are young.

After the game, my colleague and I decided to with some parents to see if they had noticed the injury. We received the same answer along the lines of “He’ll be fine, kids cry all the time.”

That may be true, but after covering upwards of 15 games throughout the course of the tournament, this was the only incident of a player crying.

If we as adults don’t understand and can’t properly recognize concussions, how do we expect athletes not to ignore or try to play through them, especially as the games begin to mean more to them?

If athletes feel that concussions are something they are meant to play through, they will ignore the signs. In order for head injuries to be properly diagnosed at all levels, parents need to educate themselves and their children on the dangers of playing through head trauma.

Edit: Shortly after writing this article I suffered a concussion playing hockey in a non-contact men's league - perhaps the other player simply forgot the non-contact part of it.

I had been lucky to have never had a concussion in all my years of playing, which may have resulted in the damage being less severe. But it still sucked having to deal with the symptoms and I can not imagine what suffering multiple ones on a consistent basis would feel like.

The Culture of Concussions in Hockey
Read more: https://www.sportsandotherthings.com/nh ... c1tj5m8job

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