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Not all adverse health outcomes in former contact sports athletes are concussion related
  1. Emma R Russell1,
  2. Thomas McCabe2,
  3. William Stewart1,3
  1. 1 Institute of Neuroscience and Psychology, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK
  2. 2 School of Medicine, Dentistry and Nursing, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK
  3. 3 Department of Neuropathology, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Glasgow, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr William Stewart, Department of Neuropathology, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Glasgow G51 4TF, UK; william.stewart{at}

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Former National Football League professional American footballers report considerably higher prevalence of physical and social impairment than neurobehavioural dysfunction

There is continued interest in the association between exposure to traumatic brain injury (TBI) during contact sports participation and lifelong adverse health effects, including neurodegenerative disease, mental health disorders and suicide.1 In part, this is driven by reporting of a neurodegenerative pathology linked to TBI, chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), in autopsy series of former athletes from multiple contact sports.1 However, while the number of cases with confirmed CTE neuropathological change grows, understanding of late clinical outcomes in ‘at risk’ populations remains challenged by acknowledged methodological limitations in many studies to date.1 2 In the paper by Brett et al 3, the authors address some of these limitations in providing …

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  • Twitter @WillStewNeuro

  • Contributors ERR and TMcC generated the first draft of the manuscript. All authors edited manuscript drafts and WS collated all author comments to the final submitted version. The corresponding author had final responsibility for the decision to submit for publication.

  • Funding This study was funded by National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke ( grant no: R01 NS094003, U54 NS115322; NHS Research Scotland; The Football Association and Professional Footballers Association.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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