Scientific Understanding of Consciousness
Consciousness as an Emergent Property of Thalamocortical Activity



Concussions are the mildest form of brain injury, and the CDC estimates at least 300,000 sports-related concussions occur in the United States each year. Although certain sports such as football, rugby, ice hockey and martial arts are considered to be more prone to incidences of concussion, other forms of recreational sports, such as horseback riding, soccer, bicycling, and skiing also carry a significant risk of concussion. Many concussions cause only temporary disruption of brain function and resulting problems fade within a week or two. However, fully 60% of people who sustain a concussion still encounter neurological problems one-month post-injury.

Most clinicians understand that following a significant head impact, athletes with any symptoms of concussion should not return to the sports activity until examined by a physician, and until they are symptom-free. However, knowing that an athlete is truly asymptomatic is very difficult to discern. In the absence of a positive finding on head CT, and without baseline neurocognitive data, a truly informed decision is difficult to make.


University are Virginia

Department of Neurology

Charlottesville, VA





In the National Football League (NFL) Pittsburgh Steeler quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was sidelined for a pivotal game with Baltimore on 29 November 2009 after suffering three concussions in prior years and, more recently, continuing headaches following his fourth concussion in a recent game.



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