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New Concussion Frontiers: Good News for Brain Injuries


THE HUMAN BRAIN IS arguably the most complex and fascinating organ structure. About 3 pounds in weight, it contains approximately 100 billion neurons – which some say compares to the same number of stars in the Milky Way.

As a sports neurologist, if I ask just about any athlete (or depending on their age, an athlete's parents) what their biggest concern is when it comes to their brain health, they'll likely tell me it's the risk of suffering a concussion. It's a neurological condition that grabs headlines and attention today in America, which wasn't always the case. And I'm glad to see a tidal shift in the way that brain injuries are being recognized, diagnosed and treated today. Still, we're not completely there yet.

The American Academy of Neurology, which is a trusted authority on sports concussion, has provided a variety of resources to parents and coaches, including a smartphone app that helps evaluate whether someone might have sustained a concussion and should see a neurologist for further evaluation. Education is crucial. Athlete patients are a sports neurologist's front lines. We can't diagnose and help treat unless someone has alerted us to the potential of concern.

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