The news has been teeming with articles about football and head injuries, and Berkowitz and Hanna LLC has been sharing some of them with you. Somewhat surprisingly, there is also a “concussion crisis” in soccer, a sport that is indeed a contact sport—and one played without any protective headwear.
The New Yorker published an article called “The Cost Of The Header,” and it is definitely worth a read. It reports that soccer players are also falling victim to chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a degenerative brain disease. Brazil’s team captain in the 1958 World Cup died in march and suffered from C.T.E. In February, a semi-professional soccer player died in 2012 at age twenty-nine of the disease.
A case in England after the death of a player known for his “heading” of the ball ruled that the death was from “industrial disease.” In other words, it was caused by repeated heading of the ball. More recently, in August a class action lawsuit was filed in the U.S., claiming “that roughly fifty thousand high-school soccer players sustained concussions in 2010—more players than in basketball, baseball, softball, and wrestling combined—and demands that limits be placed on the number of times that players under seventeen may head the ball.”
As studies continue to take place and the impact of repeated heading gets more scrutiny, it will be interesting to see if there will indeed be any changes to the game, the most popular sport in the world.
Image by Spencer Jarvis via Flickr.com