Chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, is a degenerative brain disease linked to contact sports and brain trauma. For several years, the focus has been on professional football players, with a back-and-forth, does-it-or-doesn’t-it approach to whether or not playing in the NFL will increase a person’s chance of developing the disease.
Researchers from the Boston University School of Medicine and the VA Boston Healthcare System have finally laid that question to rest. Their findings were published in the Journal of the American Medical Association: “In a convenience sample of 202 deceased players of American football from a brain donation program, CTE was neuropathologically diagnosed in 177 players across all levels of play (87%), including 110 of 111 former National Football League players (99%)” (emphasis ours).
In the interest of full transparency, researcher Dr. Ann McKee admits that there is “selection bias” in the samples used, because “many families