The "American Medical Association" put out a new study, showing that a shocking 99% of donated NFL players' brains have CTE. That stands for 'Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy' . . . and it's the degenerative brain disease linked to repeated blows to the head.
A neuropathologist examined the brains of 202 deceased football players, and of those, 111 played in the NFL. And of those 111, 110 were found to have CTE. Yes, only ONE of the brains had no signs of the disease.
It's worth pointing out that the families of these players specifically donated the brains to science because they suspected brain injuries . . . so it's not a completely random sample of NFL players.
Still, 99% IS pretty shocking, and does raise concerns about the link between football and brain injury.
The researchers say about 1,200 other NFL players have died since they started looking at the brains. And even if ALL of them were negative for CTE, if you include the 110 that were, the minimum CTE prevalence would still be close to 9%, vastly higher than in the general population.
By the way, CTE can only be diagnosed after death, with an autopsy. So even though the families may have seen some symptoms of brain damage, they wouldn't know if their loved one actually had it.
CTE doesn't usually start showing up until years after the concussions and other blows to the head have stopped. And it can lead to all kinds of problems, including memory loss, confusion, depression, and dementia.
The brains in the study were from players as young as 23, and as old as 89. They're also from virtually every position on the field, including quarterbacks, running backs, linemen, and even a place-kicker and a punter.
They've identified a lot of the players whose brains were used, and there are even images of some of their brains. The player whose brain tested negative was one of the ones that they haven't been authorized to publicly identify.
If you also count the players who DIDN'T play in the NFL, the CTE rate was 88% . . . 177 out of 202 brains.