(NBC News) A new study found some of the strongest evidence ever linking the game of football to traumatic brain damage.
Researchers at Boston University studied the brains of deceased former football players. They found evidence of severe brain damage called Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy in the vast majority of collegiate players.
Of 111 former NFL players, 110 had CTE. It can only be diagnosed after death.
This does not mean the majority of athletes who play football, including those in the NFL, are destined to have CTE. The brains in this study were donated by families who strongly suspected the players had brain damage. Many of the players whose brains had been donated had changes in their behavior, including mood swings and dementia.
The NFL responded to the new research in a statement, reading in part “The medical and scientific communities will benefit from this publication and the NFL will continue to work with a wide range of experts to improve the health of current and former NFL athletes.”
Meanwhile, the deadline for former NFL players and their families to register for a class action concussion settlement is fast approaching, Aug. 7.
The money is intended, in part, to help with the long-term impacts of head injuries.
Read more here.