See the Line brings concussions into focus

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Five-time Olympic medalist Hayley Wickenheiser joined an all-star lineup of athletes, including Honorary Chair Eric Lindros, San Jose Sharks centre Logan Couture and Western’s women’s hockey assistant coach Kalley Armstrong, to promote education, awareness and research related to concussion in sport as part of See the Line concussion symposium at Western on Wednesday.

Wickenheiser and Armstrong toured Robarts Research Institute to get an up-close look at how scientists – including Arthur Brown, Gregory Dekaban, Robert Bartha and others – are using imaging to study the brains of hockey and rugby players and what that can tell us about diagnosis and treatment for concussion.

Hosted by Western’s Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, See the Line is a collaborative, 10-year initiative that seeks to educate athletes, coaches, parents and the broader community about the serious impact of concussions. It aims to shift the culture around concussion in sport, reduce the incidence of concussion and improve care through research.

Since 2013, thousands of medical and health professionals, athletes, coaches and community members have attended See the Line events which include a continuing medical education seminar and a Community Symposium featuring an athlete panel discussion, moderated this year by Ron MacLean, host of Hometown Hockey and Hockey Night in Canada.

The symposium also included presentations from world-renowned concussion researchers and experts including Chris Nowinski, PhD, co-founder and CEO of the Concussion Legacy Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to solving the sports concussion crisis through education, policy and research. Nowinski is also the co-founder of the Boston University Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy, which studies the degenerative brain disease associated with brain trauma.