• Concussions a growing concern among student-athletes


    ORLANDO, Fla. - As high school football and college sports swing into action this fall, the nation will likely see a number of injuries and concussions reported.

    Concussions have been a major topic recently with the NFL settling a suit, paying millions to former players who said they suffered medically.

    Locally, Chelsey Whalley was enjoying her senior season as an all-academic captain on Stetson University softball team with a goal was to finish strong and enter medical school but in the blink of an eye, those goals changed when the now 22-year-old was hit in the head by a ball, suffering her first concussion.

    "It's been six months and I still absolutely do not feel right," Whalley said.

    Not only did her softball career end, but Whalley took time off school and put her goals of going to medical school on hold because of the injury.

    "It takes you off your feet, literally," she said. "Not only can you not go to class but (you) can't participate in academics."

    According to the Centers for Disease Control, as many as 3.8 million people will suffer a concussion this year.

    And an estimated 47 percent of athletes don't report feeling any symptoms after a concussive blow. Dr. Todd Maugans, the chief of neurosurgery at Nemours Children's Hospital said it's a growing problem.

    "Certainly, never ever go back to play until all the symptoms are cleared," said Maugans.

    After six months, Whalley is still waiting.

    "The most debilitating is the constant migraines, the short-term memory loss, it's a very dense, foggy feeling," said Whalley. "It's almost like you're watching yourself in a movie and you're foggy all the time."

    On "Central Florida Spotlight" this weekend, Channel 9's Greg Warmoth sits down with a family, of another injured football player and delves deeper into concussions. The show airs Sunday at 12:30 p.m. on Channel 9.

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    Concussions a growing concern among student-athletes