Concussions expert urges age limit on head blows

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ZURICH (AP) – A leading neurosurgeon has told an international conference on concussions in sports that young athletes need better protection from head injuries.

Robert Cantu, from Boston University’s medical school, tells The Associated Press that “it’s best not to have blows on the head under the age of 14.”

Cantu opposes tackling in American football, heading in football and body checking in ice hockey in youth matches.

He addressed 150 medical experts at the conference hosted by FIFA and backed by the IOC and NHL.

Delegates heard that 100 retired NFL players are involved in research to find a diagnosis for the degenerative brain disease, chronic traumatic encephalopathy.

CTE has been found in autopsies on American athletes who killed themselves after suffering depression, memory loss and aggressive behavior.

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