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Retired NFL Players More Likely to Take Painkillers
Date:1/28/2011

y were diagnosed with a concussion at some point in their playing careers, and 81 percent said they believe they suffered undiagnosed concussions. Those with suspected-but-undiagnosed concussions borrowed painkiller pills from teammates, friends or relatives to keep playing, according to the study.

The researchers also found that retired players who misuse opioid drugs are more likely to be heavy drinkers.

"So these men are at elevated risk for potential overdose," Cottler said. "They reported more than 14 drinks a week, and many were consuming at least 20 drinks per week, or the equivalent of about a fifth of liquor."

The study appears online in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence.

More information

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration offers a guide to safe use of pain medicines.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, news release, Jan. 28, 2011


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