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Dublin: 10 °C Friday 21 February, 2020

The doctor who inspired Will Smith's Concussion movie is coming to Ireland

Dr Bennet Omalu will speak at the Royal College of Surgeons in June.

Dr. Bennet Omalu and Will Smith during the promotional tour for Concussion.
Dr. Bennet Omalu and Will Smith during the promotional tour for Concussion.
Image: YouTube

THE DOCTOR WHOSE work on concussion was highlighted in the Will Smith movie of the same name is coming to Ireland to give a lecture on the subject.

Through his work as a forensic pathologist, Dr Bennet Omalu discovered that the repeated concussive blows suffered by American football players was leading to the development of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).

CTE, which was previously only seen in boxers, can eventually lead to dementia and is only diagnosable after death.

Omalu first discovered the link between concussion and CTE in football players in 2002 when he preformed an autopsy on former Pittsburgh Steelers player Mike Webster who died suddenly following years of cognitive and intellectual impairment.

However, it wasn’t until 2009 that the NFL acknowledged the link between concussion and the disease.

Omalu will deliver the keynote address at the Knocking Out Concussion in Sport lecture given by the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland on 6 June.

He will be joined by a panel that includes Professor John O’Byrne, orthopaedic surgeon and FAI Team Surgeon; Dr Rod McLoughlin, IRFU head of medical services; Dr Pat O’Neill, medical consultant in orthopaedic and sports medicine; former Ireland rugby international Bernard Jackman and Ais Daly, the retired professional mixed martial artist and Founder of Safe MMA Ireland.

Admission is free but those wishing to attend must register here.

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About the author:

Steve O'Rourke

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