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Motor Function in Former Professional Football Players with History of Multiple Concussions

Tarazi, A.; Tator, C.H.; Wennberg, R.; Ebraheem, A.; Green, R.E.A.; Collela, B.; Saverino, C.; Khodadadi, M.; Misquitta, K.; Tartaglia, M.C.

Journal of Neurotrauma 35(8): 1003-1007

2018


ISSN/ISBN: 1557-9042
PMID: 29256818
DOI: 10.1089/neu.2017.5290
Accession: 065333525

The objective of this study was to assess the incidence of motor impairment in former professional Canadian Football League (ex-CFL) players with multiple concussions. We investigated motor symptoms and signs in 45 ex-CFL players with multiple concussions and 25 age- and education-matched healthy controls with no history of concussion. Neurological assessment included items from the SCAT3 (Sport Concussion Assessment Tool 3) and the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale part III (UPDRS-Part III). A performance-based measurement of manual motor function was undertaken using the Grooved Pegboard test. Cognition was measured with patient-reported outcomes for memory, executive and behavioral symptoms as well as performance-based measures of memory and executive function. Symptoms of anxiety and depression were measured using the Personality Assessment Inventory. There was no significant difference between the ex-CFL players and controls on the UPDRS-Part III scores, and neither group reported clinically significant motor complaints. Ex-CFL players did not perform differently from control subjects on the Grooved Pegboard test. In contrast, with regard to cognitive and mood testing, players were more symptomatic: The ex-CFL players reported significantly more memory (77.8% vs. 16%, respectively, p < 0.001), executive (53.3% vs. 8%, respectively, p < 0.001), and behavioral symptoms (66.7% vs. 20%, respectively, p < 0.001). No significant differences were found when comparing ex-CFL players and controls in performance on memory and executive tests. In summary, in a group of retired CFL players who self-reported declines in memory, executive and behavioral symptoms, no motor symptoms were reported and no motor signs were detected.

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