Medicine: The Aim is to Maim

When one prizefighter hits another in the head, his objective is to render the opponent temporarily unconscious by a simple concussion, which usually leaves no permanent damage. But a hard blow can also bruise the brain, breaking some of its blood vessels and destroying nerve cells. This kind of damage can kill. The death in Manhattan last week of Benny ("Kid") Paret, 25, after nine days in a coma, from brain injuries suffered in his world championship bout with Emile Griffith, underscored the charge that "in boxing, the aim is to maim."

The medical mechanics of head injuries and knockouts in boxing...

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