Released September 15th “The Concussion Crisis: The Anatomy of a Silent Epidemic” authors Linda Carroll and David Rosner take an in-depth look at all the situations plaguing this concussion issue; from awareness to assessment to recovery. Recently in Men’s Health the authors did an interview, answering some of the biggest questions;
Men’s Health: Why don’t you think people take concussions more seriously?
The problem is that concussions are what we call an “invisible” injury. By that, we mean that it has no outward signs and it can’t be seen on conventional brain scans. So, doctors—and patients themselves—need to go on symptoms, which can be subtle. If you’re a coach, for example, it’s hard to get as concerned about an injury you can’t see as one you can see, like a broken ankle.
MH: Why can’t players just wear thicker helmets?
The way to fix the problem is not through better helmets. This isn’t a perfect analogy, but it will give you an idea of why that’s so: Think of the brain as a raw egg. The brain floats around in fluid inside the skull just like the yolk floats around inside its shell. If you hold the egg and shake it hard, you can damage the yolk without ever harming the shell. That’s similar to what happens to the brain when it’s jolted. No matter how well you protect the outside of the head, you’re not going to stop the brain from slamming around inside the skull when there are rapid accelerations and decelerations. The damage is caused by the stretching and wrenching of the nerve cells inside the brain.
Other questions were asked in the interview regarding:
- What is a concussion?
- Why don’t some recognize they have had a concussion?
- How common are undiagnosed concussions?
- Is the damage irreversible?
- What is the future of the NFL?
The interview is a worthwhile read and if it sparks your interest perhaps you should by this book. I have not read it, but if anyone has an extra copy I will take a look. Based upon all that I have read about the book it seems to be on par with what we have been saying here for some time.