Isn’t it odd how the bigger story sometimes just sits inside a small story?
One reason why I’ve maintained my subscription to Business Week Magazine for so many years is because just that seems to happen so regularly over there.
You won’t hear about this during Super Bowl Weekend, but the National Football League is battling charges that it isn’t doing enough to protect players from concussions. After a player gets banged on the head, the team doctor asks him some questions and watches him for a few minutes. Barring any major concerns, he often sends the player right back onto the field. But recent studies suggest that the odds of long-term damage skyrocket if the player suffers another concussion before the brain has healed. This is also a growing concern in high school and college sports, where athletes often shake off hard hits to rush back into the game.
A startup called BrainScope is developing a tool that may help inform doctors about which injured players should stay on the sidelines—or be taken to a hospital.BrainScope is attracting attention beyond the gridiron. It is also in talks with the U.S. Army, which it says plans to look into the technology later this year. The Pentagon estimates that 150,000 soldiers serving in the Middle East have suffered blast concussions, mostly from roadside bombs. A portable tool to gauge the severity of those injuries in real time could help protect wounded soldiers from rushing too quickly back into the fray.
Wow! Is there any chance that this number could actually be true? 150,000 concussions means what percentage of our troops have been hit by a roadside bomb? You do the math! What I see, though, at least if this number is accurate, is a battlefield that has been far more dangerous than any more traditional story I’ve read has ever told the story of.