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NFL HEALTH AND SAFETY UPDATE

December 15, 2012
Richmond High School



2012 NFL SEASON TREND: CONTINUITY AT QUARTERBACK

This season, 24 of 32 NFL teams (75 percent) have started the same quarterback in every game, the most at this point of any season since at least 1970.

 

This total includes 12 AFC teams and 12 NFC teams that have not made a starting quarterback change, whether due to an injury or related to performance.

 

The most teams and the highest percentage of teams to start only one quarterback through Week 13 since at least 1970:

 

MOST TEAMS TO START ONLY ONE QB THROUGH WEEK 14

 

HIGHEST PERCENTAGE OF TEAMS THROUGH WEEK 14

2012

24

 

2012

75.0

1982

18

 

1982

64.3

1990

17

 

1990

60.7

2006

17

 

2006

53.1

2011

17

 

2001

53.1

 

HOUSE HEARING FOCUSES ON HGH TESTING IN THE NFL

The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform is holding a hearing today entitled: “HGH Testing in the NFL: Is the Science Ready?”.  The hearing continues the Committee’s inquiry into the delay in testing for Human Growth Hormone (HGH) that the NFL and the NFL Players Association agreed to in their 2011 collective bargaining agreement. The hearing will focus on the science supporting the HGH test as well as the health dangers posed by HGH use.

 

Click here to read the August 7, 2012 letter from Chairman DARRELL ISSA (R-CA) and Ranking Member ELIJAH CUMMINGS (D-MD) to NFL Commissioner ROGER GOODELL and NFLPA Executive Director DEMAURICE SMITH.

 

Click here to read the October 28, 2011 letter from Chairman Issa and Ranking Member Cummings to Commissioner Goodell and DeMaurice Smith.

 

Witnesses scheduled to testify:

  • DICK BUTKUS, NFL Hall of Fame Member,I Play Clean (iplayclean.org)
  • LARRY BOWERS, Chief Science Officer, U.S. Anti-Doping Agency
  • MIKE GIMBEL, Director, Powered by Me!, St. Joseph Medical Center
  • DR. LINN GOLDBERG, Oregon Health Sciences University
  • DR. LAWRENCE TABAK, Deputy Director, National Institutes of Health

 

The hearing is being webcast at http://oversight.house.gov/

 

NFL MEDICAL RESEARCH GRANT RECIPIENT SHARES PROGRESS

DR. MAYLAND CHANG, a recipient of a 2010 medical research grant from the NFL, is studying an enzyme inhibitor which she hopes can one day be a treatment for people who suffer severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). Dr. Chang believes there may be a way to prevent or decrease the secondary injury to the brain following a TBI.

 

Dr. Chang explained that TBI is actually a two-phase injury. The first phase is the impact or injury to the brain from the initial trauma, which results in the death of brain cells. The second phase, which can take place hours to days later, starts a cascade of biochemical events that causes additional injury to the brain and cell death. This is where Dr. Chang sees an opportunity for medicine to intervene.

 

In her lab at the University of Notre Dame, where she is a faculty member in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Dr. Chang is studying the potential for an enzyme-inhibiting compound that can intervene and prevent secondary injury. The current work that Dr. Chang is completing in collaboration with Dr. Zezong Gu, assistant professor of neuroanatomy and neuroscience at the University of Missouri, is with a water-soluble inhibitor. It is important that a treatment for TBI is water-soluble so it can be delivered to a patient through an IV, rather than a pill as patients with this serious injury cannot swallow medication.

 

While the complete results of the study are not yet available, Dr. Chang is encouraged about preliminary data in animals that shows the water-soluble compound delivers the enzyme inhibitor to the brain.

 

Dr. Chang’s current work is a result of her interest in treating conditions for which there is no treatment – such as stroke, whose effect on the brain is similar to TBI. The lack of treatment options came into focus for Dr. Chang in 1997 when her mother suffered a severe TBI after a fall, and again a few years ago when her son suffered a concussion while snowboarding.

 

The research process is often long and challenging, but Dr. Chang hopes that her work may help lead to treatment options and brighter futures for those with severe brain injuries.

 

For more information on the NFL’s health and safety work, please visit www.nflevolution.com.


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