According to an article in the New York Times, three studies published in the past few months have offered insight into the issue of concussion prevention and athlete safety, particularly among college football players. The studies generally concluded that the reason injured players may return to play prematurely could be due, in part, to communication breakdowns between players and coaches, as well as differences among self-reporting of concussions for various positions, with offensive linemen the least likely to report concussions and other mild head injuries. The NYT article goes on to state that the studies also indicated that efforts by the NCAA and other groups to raise awareness of concussions has been inconsistent and that freshmen are more likely to believe that their coaches will think that they “did the right thing” by reporting a concussion. The three studies – which were based on a survey of 730 Division I football players on 10 teams during the 2012 season – found that for every diagnosed concussion, players sustained six substantial hits that they suspected might have caused a concussion but did not report the possible concussion. The players also reported that for every diagnosed concussion, they also received 21 smaller hits that they did not report. Concussions were diagnosed in less than 4 percent of the overall cases, but it is important to note that because medical personnel were not notified of all potential concussion-causing hits, it was difficult to know precisely how many concussions players might have sustained. The studies raised a number of questions about whether coaches, trainers, and doctors are doing enough to prevent concussions and monitor football players for possible concussions. “This suggests that these somewhat routine, lower-magnitude impacts may have clinically relevant, yet undiagnosed, manifestations, and that athletes incurring these regular symptomatic impacts may see post-impact symptoms as routine and not worthy of reporting to a medical professional,” the authors wrote in one of the studies, in The Journal of Neurotrauma. As we have reported, although concussions and mild head injuries may not be life threatening, they have been linked with a number of lifelong medical problems, including depression, fatigue, sleep problems, and increased risk of stroke. In fact, the suicides of former football players Junior Seau, Dave Deurson and Ray Easterling have all been linked to long-term health problems from concussions. At Steinberg, Goodman & Kalish, our Chicago head injury lawyers are dedicated to protecting the rights of head injury victims and their families. If a concussion or other head injury was caused by a car accident, sports injury, defective product, or negligence, we will advocate on your behalf for full and fair financial recovery. Do not hesitate to contact the Chicago head injury lawyers at Steinberg, Goodman & Kalish to schedule a free consultation to discuss a possible personal injury or product liability claim. Additional Information:
- Dangers of Concussions and Other Head Injuries
- How to Protect your Kids from Concussions and Other Traumatic Head Injuries
- Long-Term Impact of Concussions and Mild-Head Injuries
Steinberg Goodman & Kalish (www.sgklawyers.com) is dedicated to protecting victims and their families. We handle medical malpractice, product liability, personal injury, wrongful death, auto accidents, professional negligence, birth trauma, and railroad law matters. Contact us at (888) 325-7299 or (312) 445-9084.