NFL: Study Says No Link Between HS Football and Brain Decline

The NFL is highlighting the fact that a new study presented at the 2014 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons in New Orleans on March 14 suggests risks of sport-related brain injuries in high school are “relatively low,” according to an article in Science Daily.

The study’s lead author was Dr. Gregory Stewart, associate professor of orthopaedics at Tulane University School of Medicine. The study of high school players found no link between years of play and any decline in neurocognitive function. Researchers retrospectively reviewed data obtained between August 1998 and August 2001 on 1,289 New Orleans high school football players, including years of participation, age and concussion history, as well as scores on common neuropsychological tests

“The correlation between the number of years of football participation and the performance on the digit symbol substitution test does not support the hypothesis that participation in a collision sport negatively affects neurocognitive function,” Stewart said. “The implication is that the playing of football is not in and of itself detrimental.”

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