Healthy Living: Repeated hits, not concussions, cause brain disease CTE

New evidence published in the journal, “Brain,” shows it’s not concussions, but repetitive hits that cause the neurogenerative brain disease CTE, commonly associated with professional football players.

“This paper provides the best evidence to date that CTE is triggered not by concussion not by a concussion but rather by hits to the head regardless of whether it results in concussion or not,” said Dr. Lee Goldstein of Boston University.

The study says CTE can start early and without any signs of a concussion.

“The vast overwhelming majority of hits are occurring and no one is paying attention,” Dr. Lee said.

CTE has most commonly been associated with former professional football players. But the study of four deceased athlete’s brains, all of whom had died within a day to four months of receiving some sort of sport-related head injury and had a history of playing football, found changes to the brain that had already existed.

In Fact, the study found changes in the brain occurred as early as 24 hours after the injury.

In addition to athletes, CTE has also been detected in military veterans, including many who’ve been exposed to roadside bombs and other types of military blasts.

Previous studies have shown that repetitive hits to the head, even without a concussion, can result in CTE, but scientists say this is the most definitive study to date to find this connection.

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