The Importance of Protecting Student Athletes From Traumatic Brain Injuries

by | September 25th, 2014

Fall is in the air in Ohio, and for many student athletes that means it’s time to take to the field once again. It’s also important to remember the dangers that can be associated with athletes suffering traumatic brain injuries during this time of year.

A traumatic brain injury occurs when a blow to the head causes the brain to strike the skull. This impact can cause swelling or bleeding of the brain that can result in:

  • Dizziness
  • Changes in sleep patterns
  • Changes in behavior
  • Memory problems
  • Trouble speaking or moving

Repeat injuries to the brain—known as secondary brain injuries—can exacerbate the damage that was done by the initial injury. Some victims of repeat traumatic brain injuries run the risk of developing a degenerative brain disease called Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy.

To help reduce the risk of athletes in Ohio suffering traumatic brain injuries, the state recently passed a law aimed at improving safety standards for student athletes. According to an article from 19 Action News, the law passed in April requires any athlete suspected of suffering a serious blow to the head be pulled from play immediately. They cannot return to the field for the remainder of the day, and they must be cleared by a doctor or medical professional prior to returning to play.

At the law firm of Nurenberg, Paris, Heller & McCarthy, our Cleveland personal injury lawyers recognize the importance of protecting our youth from sports-related injuries, and we are hopeful the new law will be effective in achieving this goal.