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Brain Injuries / Concussions May be Linked to ALS

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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Scientists, who have conduct recent research, funded in part by the NFL, say they have found evidence that connects head injuries in athletes to a condition that mimics Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Dr. Ann McKee said she found toxic the spinal chords of three athletes who had suffered head injuries. These athletes were also later diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease, or ALS. These same types of proteins were found in the brains of athletes with chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).

McKee is a neurology professor at Boston University who has studied CTE in athletes. From her studies, McKee noticed an unusually high number of football players seemed to be affected by ALS. ALS attacks nerve cells in the spinal cord and brain and destroys the ability to move and speak.

The findings of McKee’s research suggest that the motor neuron disease that affected the three studied athletes is similar to, but not exactly the same as, ALS. McKee and her colleagues are calling this “new disease” chronic traumatic encephalomyopathy (CTEM). It is suggested CTEM is “likely caused” by repetitive head trauma, especially those athletes are exposed to in contact sports. If you would like to read more on this topic please see New study suggests sports-related brain injuries may be linked to a disease similar to ALS.