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September 30, 2009


NY Times - A study commissioned by the National Football League reports that Alzheimer's disease or similar memory-related diseases appear to have been diagnosed in the league's former players vastly more often than in the national population - including a rate of 19 times the normal rate for men ages 30 through 49. The N.F.L. has long denied the existence of reliable data about cognitive decline among its players. These numbers would become the league's first public affirmation of any connection, though the league pointed to limitations of this study. The findings could ring loud at the youth and college levels, which often take cues from the N.F.L. on safety policies and whose players emulate the pros. Hundreds of on-field concussions are sustained at every level each week, with many going undiagnosed and untreated.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK, let's see:
1. Twenty-four guys bash their heads together for an hour a week, twelve weeks a year, not counting practices and playoffs.

2. Years later, when said guys are old and wizened, many of them develop Alzheimer's.

LATE FLASH: Bears found shitting in woods; Pope revealed to be Catholic. Film at 11.

September 30, 2009 7:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To better see what may be causing any cognitive or memory problems, I would suggest that testing begin before High School play, before College play, and before Professional play.

And a record be kept of hard impacts.

Does the most damage occur during High School years while a boy's body is growing the most. Does the most damage occur during College when there might be the biggest different in body sizes of players. Does the highest incidence of dementia-related diagnosis' occur in defensive backfield players, or linemen? Does the highest incidence of dementia-related diagnosis' occur in white males? Does the highest incidence of dementia-related diagnosis occur in any particular areas of the country?

Could the problem possibly result from any or all of the following: Too many years of play combined with eating thousands of calories more than normal, steroids, growth hormone, testosterone, cortisone shots, alcohol, legal and illegal drugs, jet lag, exposure to playing fields treated with herbicides and insecticides, marital stress, and overexertion.

Knowing that playing sports takes a tremendous amount of energy, with little left for a player to feel like sitting down to study classical literature or physical chemistry, and not including the outstanding examples of truly Renaissance Men playing football. To compare a group that might be relegated to majoring in Physical Education and possibly requiring tutoring or 'understanding professors', to a totally disparate group that merely ends their working career with a five times lower rate of dementia-related diagnosis is simplistic.

No offense intended....


October 5, 2009 12:23 PM  

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