The Case Keenum Case: Why It Matters

Adam Schefter said it well on ESPN this morning “This is an abject failure,” in referring to this:

As you may have already have seen and heard about this incident in the St. Louis and Baltimore game yesterday I will not go through all the mechanics of what happened and why this was so utterly ridiculous.

What I would like to focus on with this post is why this matters.

As evidenced by Twitter there are many fans – I would hazard more than who tweeted – who could care less about this. The overriding theme is that the players are professionals and this is no big deal because they are paid to play and they know the risks.

I tend to agree with this, but only at the professional level, they are adults and have as much info as possible. However, in the moment of injury and the few seconds following it the player must be protected from themselves and from further injury. This is why the vaunted and much promoted concussion and injury surveillance protocols are in place.

If there are not people in place to make the decisions that a player cannot make of sound mind, in that moment, then why even have it. Although this is one failure and there have been cases of players being removed due to the policies in place; this one incident goes to show nothing is perfect, even in the face of a most obvious situation.

At some point the players are going to have to put their foot down and demand that the medical personnel take care of them; playing time and winning the game be damned.

This failure on a spectacular level also has ramifications beyond the NFL and even the sport of football.

Allowing Keenum to play, not even missing a snap, sends the wrong message to other players of the sport or sports that are not at the professional level. Can you imagine Continue reading

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Call for Abstracts: National Summit on Female Concussion, TBI and Headache

pink concIf there has ever been a tenacious and relentless person in the concussion space my observation is that it is this one person. Not a researcher, not a physician, not a policy maker…  A mom… Her name Katherine Snedaker.

She has been mentioned many times (Pink Concussions) here and has been a commentor on this blog as well, but what Katherine is pulling off this coming February is nothing short of monumental for the concussion space.

On Saturday February 27th she will be presenting the National Summit on Female Concussion, TBI and Headache, at the Georgetown School of Medicine.

Part of the program will include presentations of abstracts, which they are currently calling for. The Program Committee is accepting abstracts for presentation on “Sex/Gender-based Concussion Research” on concussion, TBI and headache from the areas such as:

  • Pediatrics to Geriatrics: Concussions and other TBIs across the female life cycle
  • Sports and Sports Medicine – Youth, High School, College, Olympics
  • Domestic Violence and Shaken Baby Syndrome
  • Military Service

As you probably can imagine these areas are so under-researched, mainly because head injuries are often associated with sport and male type activities. However, women are part of this issue to – a huge part. Females are also very different than males in many ways but we have recently have come to know that their response to head injury/concussion is not the same as males.

There will be more to follow on this summit – consider this post as a save the date – “ATs are one of our target groups we want,” Katherine said in an emial.

This post is directly aimed at the researchers in the community that want to share their info at this very important and unique event. Please spread the word about this to anyone you know that would be interested.

From the Call for Abstracts link at Pink Concussions:

Click the brain below to upload your abstract in a PDF form.

  • Abstracts submission portal closes 1/5/16 at 11.00pm EST Abstract acceptance letters will be sent 1/15/2016
  • Abstracts must include: Title, Authors, Affiliations, Background, Objective, Methods, Results, Conclusion plus 2 tables or graphs may be included
  • Abstract character count, excluding spaces and the words “Background, Objective, Methods, Results, Conclusion” is 350 words
  • Only reports of original research may be submitted
  • The data may have been published in a manuscript or e-publication

Address questions to either the Scientific Chair, Dr. Dave Milzman at milzmand@georgetown.edu or Executive DirectorKatherine Snedaker, LMSW at Katherine@PINKconcussions.com

You can also access the submission form HERE.

It is my pleasure to promote this event for someone that I call a friend and someone that has battled more than just stereotypes to bring awareness and education.