Tags: Alzheimer's/Dementia | brain damage | memory loss | chronic traumatic encephalopathy | Tony Dorsett | football concussions

Football Hall-of-Famer Tony Dorsett Has Signs of Brain Disorder

Thursday, 07 Nov 2013 12:26 PM

Hall of Fame NFL running back Tony Dorsett says all the hits he took during his football career have left him with brain damage.

He recently had his brain scanned and evaluated at the University of California, Los Angeles because he'd been having symptoms such as memory loss and depression, NBC News reported.

Dorsett told ESPN that he's suffered a decline in his quality of life, For example, he said he gets lost taking his daughters to their activities.

"It's painful, man, for my daughters to say they're scared of me. It's painful," Dorsett said. "I've thought about crazy stuff, sort of like, 'Why do I need to continue going through this?
I'm too smart of a person, I like to think, to take my life, but it's crossed my mind."

The tests revealed that Dorsett had signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). The degenerative brain condition has been found in the brains of a number of former football players and some researchers have linked it with head trauma suffered on the football field, NBC News reported.

Two other former NFL players -- Hall of Fame guard Joe DeLamielleure and former defensive end Leonard Marshall -- also sought brain tests at UCLA after experiencing symptoms. Both were found to have signs of CTE.

There is no cure for CTE, but researchers are hopeful that the three newly discovered cases will help advance efforts to find a treatment. They explained that finding evidence of CTE in living people provides them with opportunities to determine which treatments might be most effective, NBC News reported.

© HealthDay

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