Many of us engage in sports and activities that have a possibility of causing a head injury. As we get older we tend to take less risks and are more careful in the sports that we play. But what about our kids? Statistics show that our youth are far more prone to head injuries in the sports and activities that they choose to participate in. Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a major public health issue that affects just under 2 million Americans each year [1] and has been termed a silent epidemic by the CDC. In this weeks video blog I’d like to share with you how N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine & S-Acetyl Glutathione, both supplements we offer online and in-store, that can help prevent the prolonged concussion and head injury symptoms (this works for adults all the way down to our little kiddos).

An estimated 300, 000 sport-related traumatic brain injuries, predominantly concussions, occur annually in the United States. Sports are second only to motor vehicle crashes as the leading cause of traumatic brain injury among people aged 15 to 24 years [2].

Head impacts and concussions caused by contact sports are a quickly growing epidemic among young athletes. When left undetected, concussions can result in long-term brain damage and may even prove fatal.

To preserve the young athlete’s head health, mental cognition and ability to succeed, it is critical that coaches, players and parents are aware of the inherent dangers and how to properly perform a concussion evaluation.

CDC reports show that the amount of reported concussions has doubled in the last 10 years. The American Academy of Pediatrics has reported that emergency room visits for concussions in kids ages 8 to 13 years old has doubled, and concussions have risen 200 percent among teens ages 14 to 19 in the last decade.

While the first hit can prove problematic, the second or third head impact can cause permanent long-term brain damage. Cumulative sports concussions are shown to increase the likelihood of catastrophic head injury leading to permanent neurologic disability by 39 percent.

High school football accounts for 47 percent of all reported sports concussions, with 33 percent of concussions occurring during practice. After football, ice hockey and soccer pose the most significant head health risk.

Sports Concussion Statistics:

⦁    90% of most diagnosed concussions do not involve a loss of consciousness
⦁    4 to 5 million concussions occur annually, with rising numbers among middle school     athletes
⦁    33% of high school athletes who have a sports concussion report two or more in the same year
⦁    1 in 5 high school athletes will sustain a sports concussion during the season
⦁    47% of all reported sports concussions occur during high school football
⦁    39% — the amount by which cumulative concussions are shown to increase catastrophic     head injury leading to permanent neurologic disability
⦁    33% of all sports concussions happen at practice
⦁    3,800,000 concussions reported in 2012, double what was reported in 2002

⦁    An estimated 5.3 million Americans live with a traumatic brain injury-related disability     (CDC)

Concussion Rates per Sport (Which Sport does your child play?)

The numbers below indicate the amount of sports concussions taking place per 100,000 athletic exposures. An athletic exposure is defined as one athlete participating in one organized high school athletic practice or competition, regardless of the amount of time played.

⦁    Football: 64 -76.8
⦁    Boys’ ice hockey: 54
⦁    Girl’s soccer: 33
⦁    Boys’ lacrosse: 40 – 46.6
⦁    Girls’ lacrosse: 31 – 35
⦁    Boys’ soccer: 19 – 19.2
⦁    Boys’ wrestling: 22 – 23.9
⦁    Girls’ basketball: 18.6 – 21
⦁    Girls’ softball: 16 – 16.3
⦁    Boys’ basketball: 16 – 21.2
⦁    Girls’ field hockey: 22 – 24.9
⦁    Cheerleading: 11.5 to 14
⦁    Girls’ volleyball: 6 – 8.6
⦁    Boys’ baseball: Between 4.6 – 5
⦁    Girls’ gymnastics: 7

The journal article , “Efficacy of N-Acetyl Cysteine in Traumatic Brain Injury” [3], states the evidence that both N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine & S-Acetyl Glutathione can help prevent the prolonged concussions and head injury symptoms  I think that the there is enough evidence that we should use this knowledge to protect ourselves and our kids.  I do recommend taking these supplements as a preventative measure and I believe you can help protect your child’s brain by giving them N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine  (NAC) , especially if they are active in sports.
I’m sure you have questions or even a comment… As always feel free to contact me via chat, email of phone. I’d be more than happy to be of help.

Thank you,
Dr. Kent S Lambrecht, Pharm.D., FAARM, ABAAHP


CDC: Keeping children and teens healthy and safe is always a top priority.

[1] Faul M, Xu L, Wald MM, Coronado VG (2010) Traumatic Brain Injury in the United States: Emergency Department Visits, Hospitalizations and Deaths 2002–2006. Atlanta (GA): Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control.
[2] Concussions Among United States High School and Collegiate Athletes
Luke M Gessel, BS,* Sarah K Fields, JD, PhD,* Christy L Collins, MA,† Randall W Dick, MS, FACSM,‡ and R. Dawn Comstock, PhD*†
*The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH;
†Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Columbus, OH;
‡National Collegiate Athletic Association, Indianapolis, IN
Contributed by
Luke M. Gessel, BS, contributed to conception and design; analysis and interpretation of the data; and drafting, critical revision, and final approval of the article. Sarah K. Fields, JD, PhD, contributed to conception and design and drafting, critical revision, and final approval of the article. Christy L. Collins, MA, contributed to conception and design; acquisition and analysis and interpretation of the data; and drafting, critical revision, and final approval of the article. Randall W. Dick, MS, FACSM, contributed to acquisition and analysis and interpretation of the data and drafting, critical revision, and final approval of the article. R. Dawn Comstock, PhD, contributed to conception and design; acquisition and analysis and interpretation of the data; and drafting, critical revision, and final approval of the article.

Address correspondence to Christy L. Collins, MA, Center for Injury Research and Policy, The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, 700 Children’s Drive, Columbus, OH 43205.

[3] Efficacy of N-Acetyl Cysteine in Traumatic Brain Injury
PLoS One. 2014; 9(4): e90617.Published online 2014 Apr 16. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0090617 PMCID: PMC3989181
Katharine Eakin,1 Renana Baratz-Goldstein,2 Chiam G. Pick,2 Ofra Zindel,2 Carey D. Balaban,3 Michael E. Hoffer,4 Megan Lockwood,1 Jonathan Miller,1 and Barry J. Hoffer1,5,*
Cesar V. Borlongan, Editor
1. Department of Neurosurgery, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, Ohio, United States of America
2. Department of Anatomy and Anthropology, Sackler School of Medicine, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel
3. Department of Otolaryngology, Neurobiology, Communication Sciences and Disorders, and Bioengineering, University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States of America
4. Department of Otolaryngology, Spatial Orientation Center, Naval Medical Center San Diego, San Diego, California, United States of America
5. Graduate Program in Neuroregeneration, Taipei Medical University, Taipei City, Taiwan
University of South Florida, United States of America
* E-mail: ude.esac@reffoh.yrrab
Competing Interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.
Conceived and designed the experiments: JM BJH MEH CB. Performed the experiments: KE RB-G CP OZ ML JM. Analyzed the data: KE CP CB BJH. Wrote the paper: BJH JM CP MEH CB.