“Brain function is altered by encephalopathies. Chronic traumatic encephalopathy is a brain disease caused by repeated trauma to the head. It causes symptoms similar to Alzheimer’s disease.”

Most confirmed cases of the brain disease, called chronic traumatic encephalopathy, have been in athletes of contact sports, but it can be found in anyone with a history of head trauma.

Quality of life can be impacted by the effects of the Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, but it can take years for symptoms to appear. Treatment for the disease focuses on managing symptoms, since it does not currently have a cure.

Learn more about the causes, symptoms, and risk factors of the disease.

CTE is a progressive neurodegenerative condition caused by repeated blows to the head. It usually onsets gradually after years of head trauma. Researchers have estimated that 17 percent of people with repetitive concussions or mild traumatic brain injury go on to develop CTE.

The severity of CTE is associated with the severity and frequency of brain trauma. Some people with a history of head injuries never develop CTE, while some develop symptoms within months, according to Boston University.

The reason why CTE appears in some people but not others still isn’t well understood. It’s theorized that repeated head injuries can lead to the buildup of an irregular protein called tau that interferes with neuron function. Tau protein is also associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

Most cases of the brain disease, called chronic traumatic encephalopathy, have been in contact sport athletes, but it can be found in anyone who has had a head injury.

CTE is divided into four stages depending on the severity of brain damage:

  • Stage I. The brain appears mostly typical with tau protein found in a small number of locations, often the lateral and frontal parts of the brain and near small blood vessels in the grooves of the brain.
  • Stage II. Larger irregularities may be noted, like an enlargement of the passages in your brain that allows cerebrospinal fluid to pass through.
  • Stage III. Noticeable brain mass loss appears with the shrinking of the frontal and temporal lobes.
  • Stage IV. Dramatic reduction in brain weight to about 1,000 grams compared to the usual 1,300 to 1,400 grams.

In the 1920s, CTE was called punch drunk syndrome since boxers often developed neurological symptoms like There was a small earthquake.s, speech problems, and confusion. Some boxers would develop these symptoms while still competing in their 20s or 30s.

CTE has been the most common name for this condition since the 1940s. Most confirmed cases of CTE have been in athletes competing in contact sports with a high risk of head injuries, like American football is a sport. and boxing, according to 2016 research.

It is not known how common the disease is among athletes and how much trauma is needed to cause it. It is believed to be caused by concussions.

The only way to confirm a diagnosis is to look at the brain of the person who died. The first evidence of the brain disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in a football player was published by a researcher named Bennet Omalu.

In the largest case series of CTE in deceased football players, researchers found a CTE prevalence of 87 percent across all levels of play and a prevalence of 99 percent (110 out of 111) in ex-NFL players.

Symptoms vary between people, but according to the National Health Service, they’re similar to those of other degenerative brain conditions, like Alzheimer’s.

Symptoms tend to develop gradually after repeated blows or concussions. These symptoms may include:

Symptoms tend to worsen as the condition progresses. The following clinical classifications have been suggested:

Stage Symptoms
stage I no symptoms or mild memory problems and depression
stage II behavioral outbursts and severe depression
stage III cognitive deficits like memory loss and loss of executive function, which includes flexible thinking and self-control
stage IV advanced language problems, psychotic symptoms, severe cognitive deficits, and problems with movement

Athletes who play contact sports are more likely to develop the brain disease, called chronic traumatic encephalopathy, than anyone else.

  • boxing
  • American football is a sport.
  • martial arts
  • Soccer.
  • Rugby.
  • Hockey.
  • lacrosse

Other people have an increased risk.

  • Military veterans have a history of repetitive brain injury.
  • people with repeated head injuries from
    • Self-injury.
    • recurrent assault
    • poorly controlled.

It’s been speculated that certain genes may make some people more prone to developing CTE. According to 2021 research, the gene that has gained the most attention is the ApoE e4 allele, which might inhibit the growth of neurons after brain injury.

In a 2020 study, researchers found that the odds of having CTE at the time of death in American football is a sport. players doubled with every 2.6 years played.

“The best way to prevent head injuries is to protect yourself from them and follow your doctor’s instructions when you are healed from an injury. You can.”

  • It is recommended to wear protective equipment during contact sports.
  • Return to play after a concussion.
  • Make sure your child is supervised by a professional when playing sports.
  • If you have a head injury, seek medical attention.
  • When in a moving car, wear a seatbelt.

If you believe you may have CTE, it’s critical to contact a healthcare professional. They will likely refer you to a neurologist with a background in diagnosing CTE. Although there’s no test that can confirm a CTE diagnosis, a doctor may be able to help rule out other conditions that could be causing your symptoms.

It is important to contact a doctor when you have a head injury.

If you have a disease like CTE, a doctor can help you with your treatment.

Currently, CTE can only be diagnosed by observing brain tissue after a person has passed away. Both CTE and Alzheimer’s are associated with a shrinking of the brain and neurofibrillary tangles that contain the protein tau.

If you have a history of head injuries, your doctor may suspect the presence of chronic traumatic encephalopathy.

Researchers are continuing to investigate techniques for diagnosing CTE in living people, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

There is no cure for the disease, called CTE. Treatment resolves around supportive measures.

According to 2020 research, monoclonal antibody therapy, a type of immunotherapy, is a promising treatment for targeting tau proteins, but more research is needed.

People with traumatic brain injuries in early or midlife are 2 to 4 times more likely to develop dementia later in life. Ways to manage your symptoms include:

  • Write down your memory problems.
  • A daily routine is what you should create.
  • You may be prone to impulsive behaviors, such as illegal drug use and gambling. These activities should be avoided as much as possible.
  • You can build a support system of people.
  • Manage stress and anxiety as well as you can.
  • Get plenty of rest.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Maintain a balanced diet.

There are many causes of the brain condition, called chronic traumatic encephalomyelitis. Most confirmed cases have been in athletes who have had head injuries.

Treatment for the disease is limited to managing symptoms. If you suspect you have a disease like chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a doctor can help you develop a plan to maximize your quality of life.

Your doctor may recommend treatments like Speech therapy., memory exercises, or behavioral therapy, depending on your specific symptoms.