Teenagers who suffer concussions have a 22 percent higher risk of developing multiple sclerosis.
Head trauma while playing football or other sports has recently been linked to chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative brain disorder diagnosed in Aaron Hernandez and other suicidal football players, reports Daily Mail.
But researchers wanted to study if the risk of developing other brain diseases is heightened if someone suffers from one or multiple concussions.
The findings showed that adolescents increased their risk of having multiple sclerosis as adults and adds to the growing evidence about the dangers of high-impact sports.
Scientists at Orebro University and the Karolinska Institute in Sweden studied every person in the country who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) between 1964 to 2012.
They found 7,292 patients in the national database who were diagnosed with the autoimmune disease.
Researchers used the database to then see if any of the people with MS previously visited the hospital for head trauma or broken bones.
Their results showed that adolescents who suffered from a concussion were 22 percent more likely to develop MS as adults than those who didn’t suffer from head trauma.
This led researchers to hypothesize that adolescent brain injuries were linked to the disease in adulthood.
These findings, published in the Annals of Neurology, come amid a growing swell of research into the impact of concussions when playing sports such as football.
Earlier this year we shared that British scientists investigated the autopsies on six retired professional footballers with dementia and found they had a form of the disease associated with blows to the head, perhaps from “headers”. Read more on that here.
As a mum this freaks me out! My eldest son plays football (AFL) and I have always been worried about the head knocks. But his first concussion was actually at school earlier this year and he has no memory of how it happened. Pretty scary!
Do you worry about kids and contact sport?
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