Sport: Brains in the Ring

In Colorado, all professional boxers must get their brain waves tested regularly. Doctors audit the electronic rhythms inside each fighter's skull, 1) at least once a year, 2) within two weeks after he has been knocked out, and 3) often and repeatedly if his wave patterns look strange. After examining 24 boxers during a year, two Denver doctors reported their findings last week in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Four fighters showed severe brain disturbances and five were moderately unrhythmic in the head—indicating suspected brain damage. The worst patterns showed up...

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