Neurosurgery Editorial Office
The interest in sports-related head trauma reflects growing evidence that repeated concussions can have long-term health effects in athletes. Recent scientific reports have described CTE—a progressive neurodegenerative disease caused by repeated head trauma, seen especially in high-level competitive athletes. Patients with CTE develop mood disorders, cognitive dysfunction, and other psychiatric symptoms, typically occurring years after a history of repeated concussions.
The new collection assembles some of the most important research papers on concussions and head trauma in sports, drawn from the pages of Neurosurgery. The articles in the collection include the 2005 paper that was the first to describe CTE in a retired National Football League (NFL) player.
Subsequent papers strengthen the association between recurrent concussion and long-term "dementia-related syndromes" in professional football players and other athletes. The most recent additions are a pair of studies from 2011 describing emerging subtypes of CTE and the possible relationship between anabolic steroids and head injury. Other articles address the outcomes of concussions in young athletes—including important evidence guiding return to play after a head injury.