Nfl Concussions Essay

1422 Words Dec 8th, 2010 6 Pages
Head injuries, including concussions, particularly in the game of American football, have become a subject of deep concern, much study and even Congressional hearings in the United States.


Contrary to popular belief, a concussion is not a bruise to the brain caused by hitting a hard surface. Indeed, no physical swelling or bleeding is usually seen on radiological scans. The injury generally occurs when the head either accelerates rapidly and then is stopped, or is spun rapidly.

This violent shaking causes the brain cells to become depolarized and fire all their neurotransmitters at once in an unhealthy cascade, flooding the brain with chemicals and deadening certain receptors linked to learning and memory. The results
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The N.F.L. Players Association called for the removal of Dr. Casson, saying that he is too biased to lead the research and policy group.

On Nov. 24, 2009, Dr. Casson and Dr. David Viano, co-chairmen of the committee, resigned from the group.

In a memo to all teams in which he outlined several measures regarding concussions, Commissioner Goodell said that Dr. Casson and Dr. Viano would "continue to assist the committee," but offered no details of any future relationship.

Several doctors testified to links they have found between sports head trauma and later cognitive degeneration. Dr. Ann McKee, who has studied the brains of football players after death, testified that she believed the connection was clear and called for immediate changes to the game and concussion treatment.

Changes in N.F.L. Rules

The National Football League on Dec. 3, 2009, announced that it would impose its most stringent rules to date on managing concussions, requiring players who exhibit any significant sign of concussion to be removed from a game or practice and be barred from returning the same day.

The league's former practice of allowing players to return when their concussion symptoms subside has been criticized for putting its players at risk. It is widely known that symptoms of a concussion can reappear hours or days after the injury, indicating that the player had not healed from the initial blow.

Symptoms that require immediate removal include amnesia,
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