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Single Concussion May Increase Suicide Risk

Feb. 8, 2016, 9:26 p.m.
Posts: 26382
Joined: Aug. 14, 2005

Published yesterday in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/a-single-concussion-may-triple-the-long-term-risk-of-suicide1/

www.thisiswhy.co.uk

www.teamnfi.blogspot.com/

Feb. 8, 2016, 10:17 p.m.
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Joined: July 23, 2006

I had two friends that committed suicide a few days after a concussion just last year.

It has always been a "symptom" of concussion and it is my belief that those who suffer from a concussion should not be left unattended for the initial first weeks. Repetitive concussions should be treated very seriously with probable lifetime follow up and treatment.

www.FVMBA.com

Feb. 9, 2016, 7:11 p.m.
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Joined: July 23, 2004

thanks for posting that, Enduramil….I can put a checkmark beside each and every "symptom" mentioned in that article.

Loud Hubs Save Lives

Feb. 9, 2016, 9:14 p.m.
Posts: 1186
Joined: Oct. 21, 2008

Have not had chance to read article; but I presume the increase of suicide risk increases with multiple concussions? Otherwise, it's better to go and get two?

Feb. 9, 2016, 9:43 p.m.
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Joined: June 14, 2008

I've had 6 major concussions…life is far from normal I would say.

Feb. 9, 2016, 9:53 p.m.
Posts: 740
Joined: Aug. 14, 2003

I suspect that CTE is a much wider problem than most of the public realize. Pros and elites have the benefit of people watching them, and advanced physical training that is more likely to pick up on serious concussion problems. Talentless nitwits like myself that crack their noggin on the trail a few times a year just paint another star on their helmet, and wonder if its just age that's affecting our brains.

For some reason, extreme sports and adventure sports have attracted little attention in the scientific community when it comes to studying concussions. I would speculate that there is a lower level of awareness of concussion issues among various different sporting communities. Probably higher in hockey and football, probably lower in cycling and skateboarding. Yes, that's speculating, and you can argue different or express your own personal experience, but I don't really see much in terms of organized educational campaigns to inform riders or young racers of the dangers associated with headshots compared to what is happening in team sports.

There is a concussion protocol taught to people involved with race coaching and various teams. But there is nothing more widespread, and very little attention to our sport (MTB and cycling in general) among neuroscientists (I work with them, I'll attest to that). Part of that may be the smaller number of participants compared to football and hockey. However, every time I watch "Fails of the Month" on Pinkbike (guilty), I see shot after shot to the head, and ongoing traumatic transfer of energy to the brain via sudden stops, jolts, impacts, or changes of direction.

What's more concerning is our helmet technology. Modern designs did not originate with the goal of preventing concussion. They were designed to prevent skull fractures. A helmet typically does a very poor job of absorbing sufficient energy to negate the transfer of energy from our own stupid-ass momentum to our brain (and onward to the inside of our skull).

It's an insidious injury, because it's largely invisible, and the effects can be cumulative and not be perceived as stemming from head injuries at all when the worst symptoms become manifest. I made a list of my history of concussions a few months back. I recognized about 15 that I thought were noteworthy, including 4-5 ragdolls. Glad I'm working with the brain crew now. I'm hoping I can be front of the line when they start testing scanning and treatment options.

Feb. 10, 2016, 12:42 p.m.
Posts: 15077
Joined: Nov. 20, 2002

WOW^^, how any of those were multiples concussions? I've known some people (not adrenaline junkies) who were seriously screwed by having a second concussion before the 1st had completely healed as in no longer able to run or work or snow board due to headaches and the loss of ability to think or concentrate

Feb. 10, 2016, 7:29 p.m.
Posts: 1186
Joined: Oct. 21, 2008

[QUOTE=cerealkilla';2907191]

For some reason, extreme sports and adventure sports have attracted little attention in the scientific community when it comes to studying concussions. I would speculate that there is a lower level of awareness of concussion issues among various different sporting communities. Probably higher in hockey and football, probably lower in cycling and skateboarding. Yes, that's speculating, and you can argue different or express your own personal experience, but I don't really see much in terms of organized educational campaigns to inform riders or young racers of the dangers associated with headshots compared to what is happening in team sports..

Your hypothesis has merit. Although if you include BMX with cycling generally, I would argue that the awareness plummets. Outside of X-games competition, I don't know that I have seen a single pro wear a helmet.

Timing of this article segues perfectly into discussion of Dave Mirra's apparent suicide.

Feb. 10, 2016, 8:37 p.m.
Posts: 26382
Joined: Aug. 14, 2005

Your hypothesis has merit. Although if you include BMX with cycling generally, I would argue that the awareness plummets. Outside of X-games competition, I don't know that I have seen a single pro wear a helmet.

Timing of this article segues perfectly into discussion of Dave Mirra's apparent suicide.

Goes further outside of the sports we are discussing. One of my wife's varsity players has been out since the first week of January due to a concussion. Took a Volleyball serve to the back of her head. Wasn't knocked down but was sidelined by order of the doctor.

Don't forget that a lot of us on here where doing sports and getting wacked in the head from crashes and such long before the concussion protocols now.

www.thisiswhy.co.uk

www.teamnfi.blogspot.com/

Feb. 11, 2016, 10:27 a.m.
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Joined: Aug. 14, 2003

Nearly all sports have potential for concussion. Volleyball, basketball, water polo, skiing, very few escape this risk…maybe darts?

What I'm interested in is the development of protocols and guidelines for specific sports, and the dissemination of knowledge to participants…be it through educational campaigns, manufacturer action, leagues and associations, and the scientific community. What I have noticed is that while the risk is widespread, discussion and research on the issue is concentrated in key areas….albeit in many cases these focal areas are identified based on degree of risk and history of injuries. However, I would suggest that there are many sports in which the risk remains significant, the history of injuries under-reported, and the process of disseminating knowledge to participants (in a targeted manner specific to their activity) is woefully behind where it could be, or perhaps should be.

Feb. 11, 2016, 7:54 p.m.
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Joined: Oct. 6, 2005

I've had 6 major concussions…life is far from normal I would say.

I have also had multiple concussions and been unconscious a few times. Not sure I buy this study.

Feb. 11, 2016, 8:06 p.m.
Posts: 1612
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

I have also had multiple concussions and been unconscious a few times. Not sure I buy this study.

well there's not much to buy here as it's a review of available data and a conclusion is drawn from that. as for what the data points to you, imo you would be wise to be careful in the future if you notice any of the symptoms they're talking about and talk to your physician or a psychologist.

stay healthy - physically and mentally.

Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity ~ Seneca

Feb. 11, 2016, 8:10 p.m.
Posts: 740
Joined: Aug. 14, 2003

No disrespect to your experience Ken, but I think I defer to the CMAJ and neuroscientists from U of T on the matter. Quarter million in the sample, 10 year span, significant differences between groups. Of course, there are other factors that also have to be considered and explored through further research, but where there is smoke there is often fire.

The article perhaps could do better to distinguish single concussion as whether they include "mild concussions" in this group. However, even within the neuroscience community there is debate over the use of the term "mild concussion" due to the difficulty in determining the actual level of injury. It does not take a high-speed or huge impact to cause a traumatic brain injury. Some super model fell down during a shoot last week, and died the next day from a stroke due to damage incurred in the fall.

We should all keep in mind also, that in terms of medical science, neurology is a new field compared to other studies of the body. The translation of what scientists know into what the public understands is still at a juvenile stage when it comes to concussions…simply put… the public has trouble understanding injuries to the brain because they don't fully appreciate the nature of these injuries….the transfer of science to public reckoning is a lengthy and uneven process…and I don't mean to sound like a condascending prick when I say that (which I often do).

Think of it this way. Imagine breaking your leg. Imagine what it is like to have a broken leg, and be unable to walk properly for a while, and the pain of the injury, and the feelings that accompany such an injury.

Now imagine an injury to your brain that affects your neurological function. After the initial pain has subsided, after you get back to what you think is "normal", and after you no longer think about that injury on a daily basis….do you truly appreciate or understand the nature of the impact on your brain?

It's a very different matter. We are a long way off from testing and scanning systems, and ways of communicating the nature of neurological injuries so that 2-bit NORBA-star wannabe's like you and me can really appreciate the way that our endos, faceplants, and washouts may be affecting our beer-selection and bike-purchasing apparatus.

There are also substantial differences between people. Some of us take a licking and keep on ticking…some of us take one little biff and go all Eric Lindros on the deal.

Feb. 15, 2016, 4:46 p.m.
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Joined: Oct. 6, 2005

From what I read in the study, it included a laundry list of items that the repeated head traumas could be related to and may contribute to causing.

I have suffered from depression recently and it could have ended my marriage. But, was it due to me hitting my head repeatedly as a youth and adult? Probably not. Although, going to counselling felt that way.

I do get grumpy, irritable, and sometimes feel foggy. I am not sure that is a result of concussions or reading the NBR threads. But, I do know NBR causes me brain damage.

Staying healthy emotionally and physically is important. I will follow the CTE news as it becomes available.

March 10, 2016, 10:20 a.m.
Posts: 740
Joined: Aug. 14, 2003

For followers of this thread, fantastic article in Pinkbike today:

http://www.pinkbike.com/news/the-bakery-changing-what-we-think-we-know-about-concussions.html

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