Padded helmets unable to stop concussions in rugby

February 23rd, 2009 - 1:27 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, Feb 23 (IANS) Permitted rugby headgear doesn’t stop concussions or head injury for rugby players, according to a major new study.
While individual players may choose to wear the padded headgear, its routine use cannot be recommended to reduce the chances of sustaining concussion while playing or training, the study found.

Based on 4,000 players aged between 12 and 20, the study was led by Andrew McIntosh, biomechanics expert in the University of New South Wales (UNSW) School of Risk and Safety Sciences, working with colleagues at the Universities of Melbourne, Ballarat, Otago and Monash.

“Skull fractures and intracranial bleeding are rare in rugby injuries, but concussion is relatively common,” said McIntosh. “There’s some evidence that the standard headgear may prevent some minor head wounds but our study found that it was of no benefit in preventing concussion.”

The research was funded by the International Rugby Board (IRB) with support from the Australian Rugby Union, said an UNSW release. The findings were published in Sports & Exercise.

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