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In the absence of diagnosed concussion in collegiate contact sport athletes, a relationship is suggested between the effects of head impact exposure, white matter diffusivity measures and cognition
  1. James L Stone,
  2. Julian E Bailes
  1. Department of Neurosurgery, NorthShore University Health System, University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, Evanston, Illinois, USA
  1. Correspondence to: Dr Julian E Bailes, NorthShore Medical Group, NorthShore University Health System, University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, 1000 Central St, Suite 880, Evanston, IL 60201, USA; jbailes{at}northshore.org

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Context

There is growing concern that head impacts sustained during contact sports may lead not only to concussion but also to increased susceptibility to concussion, long-term cognitive decline and chronic traumatic encephalopathy. Study findings on this matter have been contradictory. A previous study by this group suggested that collegiate contact sport athletes are vulnerable to the cognitive effects of repetitive head impacts.1

Methods

Between 2007 and 2011, 80 non-concussed members of Division 1 National Collegiate Athletic Association American football and ice hockey teams were examined preseason and postseason with white matter MR diffusion imaging and cognitive testing at Dartmouth. Female ice hockey players were included. The contact sport …

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