Yesterday we learned that 97% of NFL players with a history of head trauma showed some level of brain damage, a rate that is much higher than other groups. That statistic came from a study from Boston University’s centre for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy. In a video discussing results of their study, they include images of what one former NFL player’s damaged brain looked like. And it is jarring.
In the images seen below, the brain on the right is from former NFL player John Grimsley who died of an accidental gunshot wound at the age of 45. The brain on the left is from a 65-year-old person with an unknown history of brain trauma. And the brain in the middle is from a 73-year-old boxer suffering from dementia.
In the brains, defective Tau proteins, a protein associated with Alzheimer’s, are stained brown. The spokesperson for Boston University described the cells stained brown as “mostly dead.” And as you can see, the brain of the former football player has large tracts of mostly dead cells and was just as diseased as the brain of the 73-year-old boxer suffering from dementia.
If you are an NFL player, this should scare you. And it is not hard to imagine that if parents see these images, they will have second thoughts about ever letting their children play football.
[credit provider=”Boston University’s centre for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy”]
The New York Times published other examples of brains from deceased NFL players. You can see those here.