Football’s InfluencE on Lifelong health and Dementia risk (FIELD): protocol for a retrospective cohort study of former professional footballers

Russell, E. R., Stewart, K., Mackay, D. F. , MacLean, J., Pell, J. P. and Stewart, W. (2019) Football’s InfluencE on Lifelong health and Dementia risk (FIELD): protocol for a retrospective cohort study of former professional footballers. BMJ Open, 9(5), e028654. (doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2018-028654) (PMID:31123003) (PMCID:PMC6538057)

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Abstract

Introduction: In the past decade, evidence has emerged suggesting a potential link between contact sport participation and increased risk of late neurodegenerative disease, in particular chronic traumatic encephalopathy. While there remains a lack of clear evidence to test the hypothesis that contact sport participation is linked to an increased incidence of dementia, there is growing public concern regarding the risk. There is, therefore, a pressing need for research to gain greater understanding of the potential risks involved in contact sports participation, and to contextualise these within holistic health benefits of sport. Methods and analysis: Football’s InfluencE on Lifelong health and Dementia risk is designed as a retrospective cohort study, with the aim to analyse data from former professional footballers (FPF) in order to assess the incidence of neurodegenerative disease in this population. Comprehensive electronic medical and death records will be analysed and compared with those of a demographically matched population control cohort. As well as neurodegenerative disease incidence, all-cause, and disease-specific mortality, will be analysed in order to assess lifelong health. Cox proportional hazards models will be run to compare the data collected from FPFs to matched population controls. Ethics and dissemination: Approvals for study have been obtained from the University of Glasgow College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences Research Ethics Committee (Project Number 200160147) and from National Health Service Scotland’s Public Benefits and Privacy Panel (Application 1718-0120).

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This study is supported by funding from The Football Association and Professional Footballers’ Association and an NHS Research Scotland Career Researcher Fellowship (W Stewart).
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Stewart, Dr William and Mackay, Professor Daniel and Russell, Emma and MacLean, Dr John and Stewart, Miss Katy and Pell, Professor Jill
Authors: Russell, E. R., Stewart, K., Mackay, D. F., MacLean, J., Pell, J. P., and Stewart, W.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > Public Health
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Neuroscience and Psychology
Journal Name:BMJ Open
Publisher:BMJ Publishing Group
ISSN:2044-6055
ISSN (Online):2044-6055
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 The Authors
First Published:First published in BMJ Open 9(5):e028654
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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