LANSING – When Dr. Stephen Bloom played high school football, he remembers a concussion being treated by “Resting it.”
In September, the New York Times, citing emails that were leaked in a hack of Sony Pictures, reported that “Concussion” was altered to avoid antagonizing the NFL, but the movie’s director, Peter Landesman disputed that report.
Bloom has been the medical director of the Sports Concussion Program at Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital for 18 years and is also an assistant clinical professor at Michigan State University and Grand Valley State University.
“I think the film does a nice job of educating the public that this is a very complicated subject, that though t is damage that occurs to the brain with repetitive concussion, not everyone who gets a concussion is going to have this problem,” he said.
“This problem is not always caused just by concussion, t are also dementias that have nothing to do with concussion. If anything, it sheds more light on the fact that we need more research, more studies and more public awareness of the risk of concussion.”
Bloom, who played football at Grand Rapids West Catholic, acknowledged t’s no way to eliminate concussions in contact sports like football and even witnessed two concussions during a swim meet last week.
“The Holy Grail that we’re looking for, and I think we’ll see in the next decade, will be a concussion treatment in the form of a pill or injection that is done immediately when a concussion is identified to help diminish the swelling or damage that occurs to the brain that ultimately causes CTE,” he said.
“I want to encourage athletes to play the sports they want,” Bloom said, “I just want them to be very sensitive to when a concussion occurs, they identify it and get it treated.”