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ISU professor discusses new concussion study on Newsline

The Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots are facing off this week in “The Big Game” this Sunday.

Last year Gisele Brady, the wife of New England Patriots star quarterback Tom Brady, made a statement that could change some views on the game of football.

She publicly stated during an interview that her husband had a concussion during the 20-16 season.

No one knew about the concussion and was ultimately never pulled from play.

Caroline Faure is a professor of sport science and physical education in the Idaho State University College of Education.

She has done years of research on concussions.

Faure’s research concludes that concussions are likely unreported in the NFL and the wives and families of concussed players could use more support.

Below you will find numbers from her recent study.

Knowledge or Observation of Actual or Possible Concussion Experience in Undiagnosed Cases

— 98.31% were aware of instances in which their husbands failed to report symptoms associated with concussion.

— Wives were asked to report severity of observed symptoms on 6-pt scale consistent with McCrory et al. (2017).

— 59.32% characterized at least one or more of their husbands’ symptoms during these times as severe, as indicated by a rating of “5” or “6” on the concussion grading scale.

— 20.34% reported observing five or more severe symptoms during these potentially concussive occasions.


Observations Towards Concussion Reporting

— 88.13% stated their husbands felt pressure to play through concussive injuries.

— 86.44% were aware of instances in which their husbands actually continued to play despite feeling concussed.

— Extrinsic Influencers to Continue to Play: Coach, Owner/GM, Teammates, Medical Personnel, Media/Fans.

— Intrinsic Influencers to Continue to Play: Fear of Losing Starting Position or Roster Spot; Desire to Prove One’s Toughness.


Fears Relative to Concussion & Concussion Risk

— 93.22% of wives acknowledged being scared of the risk of concussion to their player-husbands.

— 81.36% felt the NFL was not doing enough to protect players from concussion risk.


— 81.36% felt the NFL was not doing enough to protect players from concussion risk.

Observations of the Presence of Lingering Side Effects That May/May Not Be the Result of Concussion

— 71.19% of women stated that, based on their own observations, their husbands suffer from one or more lingering side effect commonly associated with concussion.

— The three most common side effects reported were irritability/mood swings (n=38) short-term memory loss (n=35) and depression (n=27).

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