Athletes are taking notice of the settlements received by professional football players for brain injuries sustained from sports participation, according to a Philadelphia brain injury lawyer. Now, athletes from other sports are filing lawsuits for chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, injuries sustained from years of playing professional or collegiate level sports. Brain injured athletes have filed claims against entities that they believe should have protected them from their injuries.
Many people are aware of the $1 billion settlement obtained against the National Football League in 2019 to settle brain injury claims. However, the incidence of brain injury can occur in other sports, and athletes are now seeking recovery for these injuries. A Philadelphia brain injury lawyer outlines another case of an athlete seeking compensation for CTE injuries.
New Jersey bobsledder, Pavle Jovanovic, is the named victim in a lawsuit against the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee for a brain injury sustained while training as an Olympic bobsledder. The lawsuit claims that Jovanovic developed CTE from frequent jostling to the head from bobsledding. Evidence of his brain injury included erratic behavior, alcoholism, and hand tremors. Jovanovic eventually committed suicide by hanging himself. Notably, Jovanovic is not the only bobsledder to commit suicide; a total of 5 Olympic bobsledders have attempted suicide since 2013, with 4 of them succeeding. A Philadelphia brain injury lawyer asserts that suicide and CTE injuries have a clear, scientifically accepted link, as CTE injuries frequently lead to severe depression. Testing on brain tissue completed after Jovanovic’s death confirmed his CTE diagnosis.
CTE injuries are seen in many sports in which repetitive bumps to the head cause brain trauma. Sports such as boxing, soccer, hockey, wrestling, and rugby are ripe for brain injuries from repetitive head trauma. Unfortunately, coaches and managers of these sports have attempted to normalize the symptoms of brain trauma. In bobsledding, “sled head” is a euphemism for the fogginess, headaches, and balance issues resulting from bumpy track runs. Boxers refer to it as “punch drunk.” The lawsuit against the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee claims that medical knowledge about the development of brain injuries in athletes who are exposed to brain trauma has existed for decades; however, the defendants failed to warn and protect athletes. As a result, Jovanovic suffered injuries and suicide.
A Philadelphia brain injury attorney believes that these cases will continue to mount, as athletes, parents, and medical professionals take a stand and demand improved safety to guard against these serious brain injuries. CTE has been diagnosed in athletes as young as 17 years old, and in athletes whose participation in sports was only at the high school level. Unfortunately, it’s the threat of legal action that will force leagues to examine their safety protocols and provide the proper monitoring for their athletes.
Contact a Philadelphia Brain Injury Lawyer at the Wieand Law Firm, LLC
If you or a loved one has sustained brain trauma through concussions or repetitive brain injuries while playing sports, contact a Philadelphia brain injury lawyer for a free legal consultation. We will review your case and help you understand your legal options. Call 215-666-7777 or send us a message via the online form to speak directly with an attorney.