Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Brain Expert: Kids Shouldn't Play Contact Sports -What do you think?

Children as young as 5 years old commonly play contact sports in the U.S. but one of the nation's pre-eminent on concussion research has issued a blockbuster warning saying kids should not be playing these types of sports at all.

"We're going to be recommending that nobody under the age of 14 be involved in collision sports," said Dr. Robert Cantu, chairman of the Department of Surgery at Emerson Hospital and co-director of the Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy at the Boston University School of Medicine. He also is co-director of the Neurologic Sports Injury Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

Testing has shown that teenagers who played contact sports often already showed signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, a degenerative brain disease caused by multiple blows to the head.

“The 17-and the 18-year-olds had no symptoms at all, but when their brains were studied, they had very early chronic traumatic encephalopathy,” Cantu said.

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