CTE Caused By Head Trauma
Dr. Prusiner claims that frontotemporal dementia (FTD), a common condition that occurs after brain concussions, such as those suffered by soldiers and football players, is a prion disease. People develop FTD after repeated mild head injuries, which can cause post-traumatic stress syndrome, drug use, emotional detachment, depression, and progressive loss of intellectual and motor function (see MRI in previous chapter).
In August 2013, the National Football League agreed to pay $765 million to settle a lawsuit brought by more than 4,000 retirees with advanced dementia and other problems as well as the families of players who have died from the long-term effects of head trauma. As with soldiers, an unusually high amount of football players with brain injuries commit suicide. The question is why. The NFL settlement is for medical exams, concussion-related compensation and medical research for retired players and their families.
Once CTE manifests itself, the disease pathology is almost identical to Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and Alzheimer’s disease. Is CTE a prion disease?
Please visit http://alzheimerdisease.tv/cte/ for more information about head trauma.