Retired NFL players are probably well aware of the NFL concussion settlement. What many former players may now be deliberating is whether or not to get tested for brain damage arising from concussions in the NFL. Some retired players may not show any symptoms or may not understand the process for getting tested.
Despite those concerns, we recommend that if you played in the NFL for any amount of time you should get a neurological examination. Even if you don’t show symptoms of early dementia, getting examined now is one of the most important things you can do.
Well, there are a couple of reasons. One, even if you don’t think you display symptoms of early dementia you may have damage and disorders arising from your time in the NFL and not even know it. The signs of early dementia are often ambiguous and hard to pin down for someone that isn’t a medical professional. That’s why the tests are so important.
The tests are designed for professionals to be able to spot problems that you can’t, so it’s valuable to be tested in case there’s a hidden issue you aren’t aware of. One of the worst things that could happen would be to have neurocognitive impairment, not even know it and not get treatment. This could allow the impairment to worsen and could cause a whole host of problems down the road.
Second, even if you get tested and don’t receive a qualifying diagnosis the test can serve as a baseline for future testing. Remember, the settlement stays open for 65 years and a qualifying diagnosis can be brought forth at any time during that 65 year period. So even if you don’t receive a qualifying diagnosis at this point in time it doesn’t exclude you from the settlement in the future. With no risk of giving up your rights in the settlement, getting tested gives you and your family peace of mind and provides an important baseline metric for future testing.
In the tragic event that you did develop neurocognitive impairment later in life getting testing now would be important for earning a settlement later. That’s because awards are reduced for players who don’t get tested early or can’t prove their past neurocognitive abilities. In essence, getting tested now is a free insurance policy against problems that could arise later in life.
Obviously, the neurological testing required for the NFL settlement can be an intimidating and worrying prospect. But it is so important for you and your family that you get tested now. Putting it off can cause you to miss a serious neurocognitive deficiency and the treatment that you need to live a full life.
If you’re looking for a doctor who can test you for neurocognitive deficiencies Weisberg & Associates can help. We work with a team of board certified neurologists and neuro-physicians who can test you. Contact us today if you want to get tested. There’s no cost and no risk for you. Don’t miss an opportunity that could possibly save your life. Call us to get tested today.