Brain Injury and Concussions Linked to Later-Life Depression

A study by the University of North Carolina’s Center for the Study of Retired Athletes of over 2,500 retired NFL players found that the rate of clinical depression among the population of retired players is strongly correlated with the number of concussions they sustained during their careers. This study corroborates other findings regarding brain injury and later-life depression in other subsets of the general population. Recent high-profile cases involving retired NFL players include Ted Johnson, former New England Patriots linebacker, who suffers from severe depression and declining cognitive abilities, and Andre Waters, former Eagles safety, whose suicide was linked by a neuropathologist to repeated concussions. The UNC study will be published in the Journal of the American College of Sports Medicine.

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