Traumatic brain injury in sports happens not just to professional athletes. What are simple crucial rules to prevent traumatic brain injury in sports? How to prevent devastating consequences of brain trauma. Leading neurosurgeon with special interest in brain and spine trauma in athletes shares his wisdom. Traumatic brain injury in sports happens not just to professional athletes. Dr. Anton Titov, MD. Traumatic brain injury in football can affect high school players and amateur athletes. Dr. Arthur L. Day, MD. Repetitive brain injury causes brain degeneration. Recurrent traumatic brain injury causes Alzheimer's type of chronic neurological disease. Sports related head injury is the most frequent cause of long-term deterioration of health and active life in athletes. How long should athlete stay away from sports after concussion? How to develop trust in the sports team? Athletes should not hide brain injury from team overseer or coach. Dr. Anton Titov, MD. Sometimes to seek neurologist or neurosurgeon's evaluation of athlete? Video interview with leading expert in cerebrovascular neurosurgery and minimally invasive neurosurgery. Medical second opinion confirms that chronic traumatic brain injury diagnosis is correct and complete. Medical second opinion also confirms that treatment for chronic traumatic brain injury is required. Dr. Anton Titov, MD. Medical second opinion helps to choose the best treatment for traumatic brain injury. Get medical second opinion on traumatic brain injury and be confident that your treatment is the best. Traumatic brain injury in sports. Dr. Arthur L. Day, MD. Sports medicine is one of your career-long interests. You were a neurosurgeon for American football team in Florida. Traumatic brain injury is discussed often, especially in contact sports. What are common traumatic brain injuries among athletes? How to prevent brain injuries of athletes in the field? Dr. Anton Titov, MD. What are advanced in treatment of traumatic brain injury in athletes? You also co-authored textbooks "Neurological Sports Medicine: A Guide for Physicians and Athletic Trainers" in 2001 and "Handbook of Neurological Sports Medicine: Concussion and Other Nervous System Injuries in the Athlete" in 2014. Dr. Arthur L. Day, MD. (Neurosurgeon, University of Texas): Certainly the nervous system is in danger from anything that causes the body to move under stress. The public has recently become aware of and concerned about concussion during contact sports play. It is American football, ice hockey, rugby. Catastrophic brain injury can happen if the brain injury becomes repetitive. If athlete does not fully recover between one concussion and the next concussion. Or slowly progressive deterioration in mental faculties can happen It is similar to Alzheimer's disease. Brain function deterioration happens when traumatic brain injury in athlete becomes repetitive. Or when recovery time between concussions is insufficient. Dr. Arthur L. Day, MD. Impact of traumatic brain injury has been highlighted for some well known ice hockey players. Dr. Arthur L. Day, MD. Brain injury in football players, mainly American football players, is well known. We now know that concussion is a real phenomenon. Concussion is not just something that is a physiological (normal) phenomenon. The brain did not work for a minute, but then it's OK. Brain is not OK after concussion. Even though the brain looks OK. We have to make sure that we don't return the athlete to sports play before they fully recover from the concussion. Otherwise they might be at risk of serious traumatic brain injury. Sometimes athlete had a several brain injuries (concussions). We know that athletes with repetitive traumatic brain injury have a higher chance of getting some serious degeneration in the nervous system later in their lives. Dr. Arthur L. Day, MD. Clarification of events that resulted in concussion is important. Counting the number of concussions is important. Keeping track of duration of symptoms that athlete had after each concussion has become a major concern in sports injury in the United States. Also you have to make sure that athlete has recovered fully before returning to sports play. We are not talking only about professional athletes. We want our children to participate in sports. We want our population to be healthy. We as neurosurgeons need to define which activities are safe and this are not. So that we can all stay physically active during our lives. Because we don’t want to worry about consequences of repetitive traumatic brain injuries. Athletes can also injure their back. They can pinch a nerve or break their neck. So it's important to have rules that specify when athlete can return to play. Also when and what something should be done about the injury an athlete had during sports play. Dr. Arthur L. Day, MD. Sometimes a parent watches this interview and has a teenager who plays contact sport (ice hockey, football, or rugby, for example). What can parents do to minimize the risks of traumatic sports-related brain injury in their child? Dr. Arthur L. Day, MD. I think they need to obviously wear protective gear as outlined. But there has to be a team overseer (coach, administrator). Coach has to be aware of the consequences of head injury in sports. Sometimes athlete has a concussion or other traumatic head injury. Then this overseer should remove athlete from sports play. Sports team overseer should not let athlete return to play until athlete recovers from concussion or other head injury. Whenever athlete has a concussion, athlete has to be out of contact (out of active sports play) for a week at least. Athlete should not return to play until athlete has been symptom-free for that full week. Best team coach or overseer is someone who doesn't a have any problems with communication with the athlete. Coach must find out when the athlete is injured. Athletes should trust this person and not hide their sports head injury. So they can keep playing. That is a kind of atmosphere of trust that team coach or overseer has to create. But we also need to have very strict guidelines about when athletes have to stop playing sports. We need rules when they have concussion or other head injury. Also we have to establish strict rules when they can return to play. Obviously in addition we have to recognize when it's more than just a concussion. So that athlete can be sent to neurologic specialist for head CT scan or other diagnostic workup. It's important to ensure that symptoms do not linger longer than usual. Dr. Anton Titov, MD. A neurosurgeon must ensure that there is nothing more serious going on other than a concussion. Traumatic brain injury in sports. Short and long-term consequences of brain injury in sports. Concussions, spine injury. How to prevent injury in sports.
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