Making headway against concussions

Former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez was 25 years old when he was convicted in 2015 of first degree murder and sentenced to life in prison without parole. This past April, he took a bed sheet and hung himself in his prison cell.

Hernandez’s family donated his brain for research, and last month it was reported that the examination showed that Hernandez had such a severe form of the degenerative brain disease CTE that the damage was akin to that of players well into their 60s.

While the researchers didn’t directly link Hernandez’s violence to CTE, the disease often manifests itself by aggressive behavior and impulses, some dementia, mood swings, lapses in judgment and a disorganization, findings show.

To read the whole story, please click his picture.

CTE – chronic traumatic encephalopathy – has been found in more than 100 former NFL players, some of whom committed suicide, according to researchers at Boston University. Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected challenges to an estimated $1 billion settlement between the NFL and thousands of its former players who have been diagnosed with brain injuries linked to repeated concussions. The class-action lawsuit accused the NFL of hiding what it knew about the link between concussions and CTE.

Knowing what we know about concussions and their effect on the brain, it would only make sense that we’d want to protect our brains in whatever way possible. That would include bicycle helmets.