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Concussion
About the book
  • Published: 24 November 2015
  • ISBN: 9780241975923
  • Imprint: Penguin eBooks
  • Format: EBook

Concussion


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The David vs Goliath story of the pathologist who discovered that America's favourite sport was killing its players
The brilliant young forensic pathologist had no idea that the body on the slab in front of him would change his life, and ultimately change the world.
The body belonged to 53 year-old Mike Webster, a legendary American Footballer. After retiring from the game Webster's mental health had rapidly declined - he ended up living out of his van, treating his back pain with a Taser and using Superglue to fix his rotting teeth.
How did this happen? How did Mike Webster end up like this? Dr Bennet Omalu wanted to know. Born in Nigeria against the brutal backdrop of Civil War, Omalu's move to America and training as a pathologist let him act as an advocate for the dead. He considered it his calling.
The autopsy found that Webster's psychosis was no accident. Omalu unearthed groundbreaking evidence of a trauma-related disease - the inevitable consequence of years of head clashes in games. He knew that it would kill scores of other sportsmen unless something was done, and naively believed that the NFL would welcome the discovery. Instead, America's most powerful corporation tried to destroy him and discredit his findings.
Taut and gorgeously told, this is the intensely personal story of one man's fight against a multibillion dollar colossus. A man who stood up for what was right, whatever the cost.
%%%This is the story of one man's fight against a multibillion dollar colossus. A man who stood up for what was right, whatever the cost.
The brilliant young forensic pathologist had no idea that the body on the slab in front of him would change his life, and ultimately change the world.
The body belonged to legendary American Footballer Mike Webster, whose mental health had rapidly declined after he had stopped playing - he had ended up Tasering himself to relieve his chronic back pain and fixing his rotting teeth with Superglue.
Dr Bennet Omalu found that the psychosis suffered by "Iron Mike" was no accident. His autopsy unearthed evidence of a trauma-related disease - the direct result of years of blows to the head in games. He knew it would keep killing scores of other sportsmen, including rugby players, unless something was done. He believed that the NFL (National Football League), one of the most powerful corporations in America, would welcome the discovery. But it was the one truth they wanted to ignore.
Omalu himself became a target.
'This is classic David and Goliath stuff, and as exciting as a great courtroom drama. A riveting, powerful human tale . . . a masterclass on how to tell a story'
Charles Duhigg, New York Times columnist and bestselling author of The Power of Habit
%%%This is the story of one man's fight against a multibillion dollar colossus. A man who stood up for what was right, whatever the cost.
The brilliant young forensic pathologist had no idea that the body on the slab in front of him would change his life, and ultimately change the world.
The body belonged to legendary American Footballer Mike Webster, whose mental health had rapidly declined after he had stopped playing - he had ended up Tasering himself to relieve his chronic back pain and fixing his rotting teeth with Superglue.
Dr Bennet Omalu found that the psychosis suffered by "Iron Mike" was no accident. His autopsy unearthed evidence of a trauma-related disease - the direct result of years of blows to the head in games. He knew it would keep killing scores of other sportsmen unless something was done. He believed that the NFL (National Football League), one of the most powerful corporations in America, would welcome the discovery. But it was the one truth they wanted to ignore.
Omalu himself became a target.
'This is classic David and Goliath stuff, and as exciting as a great courtroom drama. A

  • Pub date: 24 November 2015
  • ISBN: 9780241975923
  • Imprint: Penguin eBooks
  • Format: EBook

About the Author

Jeanne Marie Laskas

JEANNE MARIE LASKAS is a columnist for The Washington Post Magazine, where her "Significant Others" essays appear weekly, and a contributing editor at Esquire. She is also an assistant professor at the University of Pittsburgh, where she teaches creative writing. When she’s not working on her next book, she, Alex, and their two daughters tend the goats, sheep, horses, mules, and other animals at Sweetwater Farm in Scenery Hill, Pennsylvania.

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