Rhinehart Music Center
As detailed in the 2015 award-winning film Concussion, Dr. Bennet Omalu’s career breakthrough in becoming the first doctor to discover and identify chronic brain damage as a significant factor in the deaths of certain professional athletes wasn’t a smooth venture. Faced with ridicule and dismissal by the NFL, his peers, and the sports industry as a whole, Omalu has become a symbol of truth in the pursuit of doing what’s best for people and their health.
Omalu’s breakthrough came in 2002, when he identified and named the disease Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), which was originally discovered in the autopsy of legendary Pittsburg Steelers Center Mike Webster. “Iron Mike” died at age 50 and his brain showed trauma signs doctors had never seen before—within five years of reporting on Webster’s case, Omalu went on to identify CTE in eight more deceased NFL players. He was also the first to discover CTE in military veterans with PTSD and professional wrestlers.
Today, CTE is a generally accepted disease and Omalu’s findings have revolutionized neuroscience, sports medicine and safety, brain trauma study as a whole, and the entire sports industry. In 2015, Omalu’s life and work were chronicled in book and film format, both titled Concussion. The book was released in November 2015 and the film version with Will Smith was released just a month later on December 25, 2015.
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Larson Box Office, Gates Athletics Center: 260-481-6555
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