Traumatic Brain Injury from Repeated Concussions

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Brain injuries from concussions, which result from brain movement within the skull after an impact, may lead to problems with memory and communication, personality changes, as well as depression and the early onset of dementia. Multiple blows to the head can lead to long-term brain injury, including memory loss, dementia and depression.

Weisfuse & Weisfuse, LLP represents former NFL players in a lawsuit brought against the NFL and Riddell Inc. The lawsuit alleges that the league and helmet manufacturer, Riddell Inc., concealed and failed to warn of risks associated with multiple blows to the head. The NFL should have warned players about the long-term risks of such blows and enacted league-wide standards and guidelines regarding post-concussion medical treatment and return-to-play standards for players who suffer a concussion.

In 1994, the NFL studied concussion research through funding the NFL Committee on Mild Traumatic Brain Injury. The committee’s published findings in 2004 showed “no evidence of worsening injury or chronic cumulative effects” from multiple concussions. In addition, in a related study, the committee found that “many NFL players can be safely allowed to return to play” on the day of a concussion, if they are without symptoms and cleared by a doctor. It is alleged in the complaint that these results are contrary to 75 years of well-established medical principles. In June 2010 the NFL acknowledged that concussions can lead to dementia, memory loss, chronic traumatic encephalopathy and related symptoms.

The former NFL players contend in the suit that they suffer from dementia, headaches, lost memories, blurred vision and depression as a result of repeated concussions suffered from bone-jarring hits and tackles.

Former Baltimore Colts tight end John Mackey died after being diagnosed with dementia. Traumatic brain damage was found in autopsies of Andre Waters, a former Philadelphia Eagles defensive back who killed himself in November 2006 at the age of 44, and former Chicago Bears safety Dave Duerson, who killed himself in February at age 50. Duerson left a note requesting that his brain be studied for research, which determined that he suffered from a neurodegenerative disease linked to concussions.

Weisfuse & Weisfuse, LLP has a long history of successfully representing victims of traumatic brain injury and people seriously injured in sports accident due to the negligence of others.

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