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NFL Players With Concussions Sidelined Longer: Study
Date:10/25/2010

nservative approach to managing concussions.

The researchers also found that in the later time period, there were fewer documented concussions per NFL game overall, especially among quarterbacks and wide receivers. But there was a significant increase in concussions among tight ends.

Casson said the increased rate of concussions among tight ends may have something to do with how the game has evolved over the years. "Tight ends are being used less as blockers and more as pass receivers, so they're running down the field at higher speeds and are more prone to being involved in significant head collisions," he said.

Dr. Gail Rosseau, a neurosurgeon at Northshore University Health System in suburban Chicago and a spokeswoman for the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, said she was encouraged by the study findings, which are "at odds with the impression that the general public has when they open up the newspaper every day, and there seems to be yet another story about football players and concussions."

"What's happening today is that there's an increased recognition of the problem, and there's an evolution in the culture at every level of play that's allowing and even encouraging players to self-report when they have symptoms," said Rosseau.

"Football is a game that three million young Americans love to play, and so we're not talking about doing away with the game completely," noted Rosseau, who is also the mother of a high school freshman who's been playing football for seven years. "But as neurosurgeons we want to do everything we can do to make it as safe as possible."

The study is published in the November/December print issue of the journal Sports Health.

More information

To learn more about concussions, visit the U.S. National Library of Medicine.


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