The next in our "Best of the Month" series is from May 14, 2012:
We neuropathologists, and society as a whole, have spent a lot of time
over the last couple of years rethinking the long-term effects of repeated concussive and subconcussive blows to the
heads of professional and college football players. But what about the
3.5 million kids in American who play below the high school level? Dr. Peter Cummings
today sent me a link to a report regarding groundbreaking research
being done at Virginia Tech in which impact-measurement instruments were
placed on 7 and 8-year-old football players. Data was collected on more
than 750 hits to the head over the course of the season.
a professor of Biomedical Engineering, reports that some head impacts
in youth football are equal in force to some of the bigger hits he sees
the college level. The average kid received 107 head impacts during the
course of the season. This is fewer than seen in high school (which
averages about 500 per season) and college (which amounts to about 1000
per season.). But what about the magnitude of these hits? The median
impact was 15 g's. In Duma's study, there were 38 impacts that were 40 g
or greater (almost all of which occurred during practice). Six impacts
were over 80 g's, which starts to get into the range of risk for
concussion. “Nobody expected to see hits of this magnitude,” says
Duma, who speculates that once players start seeing hits of 30 g's
or above, there is a risk for cumulative injury.
Here's the video report
from reporter Stone Philips. The interviews with the parents of these
youth players perplexed me. All of the parents featured found the
results concerning, but none expressed any thoughts about having their
child switch to another sport.
I discuss issues pertaining to the practice of neuropathology -- including nervous system tumors, neuroanatomy, neurodegenerative disease, muscle and nerve disorders, ophthalmologic pathology, neuro trivia, neuropathology gossip, job listings and anything else that might be of interest to a blue-collar neuropathologist.
Tuesday, November 6, 2012
Best Post of May 2012: New Study Looks at Head Impacts in Youth Football
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