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In both Missouri and Illinois, there are new laws regarding young athletes and concussions.  Experts, including professional and collegiate sports stars, discussed changes at Saint Louis University.

Doctors at the conference welcomed former St. Louis Football Ram Mike Jones.  They say pro athletes like Jones, St. Louis Blue David Perron and Pittsburgh Penguin Sidney Crosby have either suffered concussions or played with someone who has.  Doctors also say one person, having several concussions, can suffer symptoms that last for years.  Those symptoms can even end their athletic careers.

“They could suffer a more severe head injury,’ said Saint Louis University neurology professor Ram Malhotra.  ‘If their brain is already injured, if they go back into play.  So, you could actually suffer something like a bleed in the brain or bruising of the brain.”

The new laws say kids have to sit out at least 24 hours.  They must to see a doctor.  And, a doctor — not a coach or parent — has to clear the athlete for play.  Those attending the conference learned how to recognize symptoms of a head injury and what to do when they see a young athlete in trouble.

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