Tag Archives: Alzheimer’s Disease

#C4CT Concussion Awareness Summit Reconvenes Next Week

25 Jul

Brewer Sports International and Amarantus Bio Science is continuing their efforts to collaborate and discuss the issue of traumatic brain injury, in particular concussion.  In this version the focus will be on Alzheimer’s;

The #C4CT Concussion Awareness Summit is being convened on July 31, 2014 to explore the potential link between TBI and Alzheimer’s disease.  A diverse working group of clinicians, medical researchers, policy makers, international diplomats, athletes, celebrities, and philanthropic organizations will be assembled to raise awareness, advance clinical research, and develop public policy in order to address this major unmet medical need and public health issue.

The #C4CT Summits have a stated goal to collaborate information and ideas to try and further both understanding and proper response to this issue at hand.  I described it as – using a Japanese proverb – “none of us is as smart as all of us.”  Which is definitely the case for just about anything in life.  However, with so many egos and generally smart people there seems to be a ton of hand-wringing and chest thumping without a lot of resolution.  Jack Brewer and Gerald Commissiong are trying to find a way to get everyone on the same page.  Evidence of this was asking me to be a panelist during the last UN visit in January.  You can see the recap below;

There is still time for you to attend this wonderful event, littered with some great minds and speakers.  If you cannot attend you should follow their twitter feed next Thursday (unfortunately I will be away on vacation so I will not be live blogging the event this time around).

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CDC, NIOSH and Department of HHS Issue Statement

27 Jan

For many years the “government” has kept its collective mouth shut about happenings in sports.  Occasionally they will make statements regarding the health of players in sports; case in point steroids and PED’s.  The highest football league in the States and world has often had little resistance from “government” while doing business, until now.

The Department of Health and Human Services along with The Center for Disease Control and The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health have released an NFL Notification about brain and nervous system disorders.  The NFL Notification can be found by clicking on the jump above.  Here are the highlights;

  • In general, brain and nervous system disorders were more than 3 times higher among players; 17 players died with Alzheimer’s, ALS, or Parkinson’s compared to 5 men in the U.S. (see graph).
  • More speed position players died from these disorders compared to the non-speed position players.
  • ALS was 4 times higher among players; 7 players died with ALS compared to fewer than 2 men in the U.S.
  • Alzheimer’s was 4 times higher among players; 7 players died with Alzheimer’s compared to fewer than 2 men in the U.S.
  • Parkinson’s was not increased among players compared to men in the U.S.

This is not “old” news rather, it is confirming what has already been known, but Continue reading

New Study; Posting for Reference

7 Sep

This information was not only new, but really took up time on the airwaves with its information.  For some this may be a head scratching, but for most in the know it was really confirmation of what the popular line of thinking has been.  Really, if you think about this in a vacuum, brain trauma is bad, and increased exposure over long periods of time is real bad.

Here is a recap from CTVNews in Canada;

Former NFL players appear to be at an unusually high risk of dying from Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s or Lou Gehrig’s disease, suggests a new study that once again highlights the dangers of the game of football.

The study, which appears in the journal Neurology, found that the death rate from those three diseases among a group of former NFL players was about three times what one would expect from the general population.

The study looked at 3,439 former players who had at least five playing seasons from 1959-1988 with the NFL. The average age of the study participants was 57 and only 334 players – about 10 per cent of them – have now died.

Researchers compared the players’ deaths to a comparable group of American men and found that in 10 of the former NFL players, either Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s or Lou Gehrig’s disease (also called ALS) was listed as the cause of death.

That’s about three times the general rate for American men, the researchers reported.

I would also like to take this time to make sure we are not vilifying the NFL or football for that matter.  Sure the sport has plenty of brain injury, but concussions and repetitive blows to the head are not unique to the gridiron.  Soccer for one is a sport that is both understudied and had potential for chronic cases.  In the sport of baseball the catcher position is an area of concern.  Hockey, rugby, rodeo, Aussie Rules all have a place in this discussion.

Mostly, remember that kids are now exposed to sports at a much younger age then this study group, and the group also was playing before the 90’s – before everyone got bigger, faster and stronger.

More Research From AAIC

19 Jul

A recent study to be presented by Chris Randolph in Paris at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference will be “piggybacked” on the information that came out yesterday.  In a Bloomberg News report by Elizabeth Lopatto there was a small preview of what Randolph will be disclosing, and it is not good news for those that are trying to bury their head in the sand;

The study, to be presented today by Christopher Randolph of Loyola University in Chicago, found that athletes who play American football showed symptoms of mild brain dysfunction at an earlier age than nonplaying peers. In addition, there was more illness among the retired athletes than in those who were about the same age.

“You don’t play football without getting a concussion,” said Cornelius Bennett, a former linebacker for the Buffalo Bills and head of the retired National Football League Players’ Association. “We’re taught in football that if you can’t play, you lose your job, and if you don’t report concussions, you have a better chance of keeping your job.”

Very interesting, the information and the quote from Bennett; the primary issue seems to be centered around professional football.  What we need to understand is Continue reading

Alzheimer’s Association Lets It Be Known

18 Jul

There has been a lot of press regarding the predisposition of the brain after playing in the NFL; for years the league has tried to keep a lid on it, claiming there is not sufficient evidence to support a NFL career and increased risk of degenerative brain function.  The NFL is not the only one with this issue; the military has also been intrigued by service and brain predisposition, however the military has been trying to helps its veterans by working hard on the issue.

All of this could change with the press release from Alzheimer’s Association, meeting this past weekend in Paris for their International Conference.  The Alzheimer’s Association is the world’s leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer care, support and research.  The press release is titled “Brain Injury May More Than Double Dementia Risk in Older Veterans, with the subtext of: Additional Study Suggests that Former Athletes with Concussions have Increased Risk of Cognitive Impairment, with Earlier Onset;

PARIS, July 18, 2011 – Older veterans who experienced traumatic brain injury showed a more than two-fold increase in the risk of developing dementia, according to new research presented today at the Alzheimer’s Association® International Conference 2011 (AAIC 2011) in Paris. Continue reading

Generation Alzheimer’s

5 May

In The Concussion Mailbag we received this from Diane Wright;

As you may have heard, there have been some amazing breakthroughs this past month in linking certain genes to Alzheimer’s, but there is still a lot of work to be done. This year, the first of the Boomer Generation turns 65. To bring urgently-needed attention to the risk facing the Boomers, Alzheimer’s Association released a groundbreaking study, Generation Alzheimer’s: The Defining Disease of the Baby Boomers.    

I thought that you would be interested in sharing this important information with the readers of The Concussion Blog, so I’ve put together a microsite, with all sorts of information to help spread the word:

http://alz-news.org

I think it is very interesting micro-site and anyone who may be suffering from AD should take a look.

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