Concussion Experts From Around the World Convene
Over 100 medical experts from around the world convened in Zurich, Switzerland last week. The Conference was the Consensus Conference on Concussion in Sport. An event that is held once every four years , backed by the International Olympic Committee.
Robert Cantu, MD, Chief of Neurosurgery at Emerson Hospital and Co-Director of Boston University’s Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy shared his views and research regarding concussions at both the adolescent and the NFL levels.
Dr Cantu has suggested that youth organizations should not permit tackling in football, heading in soccer and body checking in ice hockey for athletes younger than the age of 14. Dr Cantu describes that for this age group, there is disproportionate head size to neck muscle strength. Basically, the head has grown to adult size but the neck muscles have not strengthened to that level...causing what he terms as a “bobble head doll” effect when there is a blow to the head. He made sure to add that : “ I am not anti-football--I just want them to play flag football until the age of 14.”
Cantu also shared that current research is being done regarding former NFL players who were exposed to a high risk of concussions and looking at spinal fluid and electrical activity of the brain of chronic traumatic encephalopathy(CTE).
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