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Published On: Thu, Jan 10th, 2013

Junior Seau brain analysis reveals CTE, may have contributed to suicide

Junior Seau apparently had a disease of the brain at the time of his death from suicide last year. Study results of the NFL great’s brain showed evidence of chronic traumatic encephalopathy or CTE according to the National Institutes of Health or NIH on Thursday.

CBS News noted in a Jan. 10 report that Junior Seau’s disease of the brain was consistent with autopsies from people who suffered “with exposure to repetitive head injuries.”

Seau’s family requested that his brain be studied to determine why the legendary football player took his life.

“The brain was independently evaluated by multiple experts, in a blind fashion,” said Dr. Russell Lonser, who oversaw the study. “We had the opportunity to get multiple experts involved in a way they wouldn’t be able to directly identify his tissue even if they knew he was one of the individuals studied.”

The NIH, based in Bethesda, Md., conducted a study of three unidentified brains, one of which was Seau’s. It said the findings on Seau were similar to autopsies of people “with exposure to repetitive head injuries.”

“I was not surprised after learning a little about CTE that he had it,” Seau’s 23-year-old son Tyler said. “He did play so many years at that level. I was more just kind of angry I didn’t do something more and have the awareness to help him more, and now it is too late.

“I don’t think any of us were aware of the side effects that could be going on with head trauma until he passed away. We didn’t know his behavior was from head trauma.”

2012 photo Ângulo ótimo

2012 photo Ângulo ótimo

That behavior, according to Tyler Seau and Junior’s ex-wife Gina, included wild mood swings, irrationality, forgetfulness, insomnia and depression.

“He emotionally detached himself and would kind of `go away’ for a little bit,” Tyler Seau said. “And then the depression and things like that. It started to progressively get worse.”

He hid it well in public, they said. But not when he was with family or close friends.

“We appreciate the Seau family’s cooperation with the National Institutes of Health,” the league said in an email to the AP. “The finding underscores the recognized need for additional research to accelerate a fuller understanding of CTE.

“The NFL, both directly and in partnership with the NIH, Centers for Disease Control and other leading organizations, is committed to supporting a wide range of independent medical and scientific research that will both address CTE and promote the long-term health and safety of athletes at all levels.”

NFL teams have given a $30 million research grant to the NIH.

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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