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James D. Carson M.d. Dip. Sport Med.
01-10-1997, 09:25 AM
Dear Colleague:

SportSmart Canada is sending this message to a number of mailing lists to
help determine the incidence of ice hockey related spinal and head injuries.
We are mailing questionnaires to over 1500 physicians this month with the
cover letter below enclosed. In addition, this is the first time we are
actively soliciting the international incidence of these injuries. We hope
that physicians around the world who have knowledge of one of these injuries
will cooperate by simply sending me their address so we can mail you a
questionnaire. Our definition of a major injury includes any hockey player
who has sustained a fracture or dislocation of the spine, with or without
injury to the spinal cord or nerve roots. It includes those with and without
a permanent neurologic deficit. Minor injuries such as strains or whiplash
are excluded. We also wish to include cases of hockey injury with either
severe or repeated concussions. Please reply by e-mail to jdcmd@inforamp.net
(JAMES D. CARSON M.D. DIP. SPORT MED.)if you have a case to report.

On behalf of Dr. Charles Tator and SportSmart Canada, I thank you.
================================================== ============

January, 1997



TO: All Canadian Neurosurgeons, Orthopaedic Surgeons, Physical Medicine and
Rehabilitation Specialists, Members of Canadian Academy of Sport Medicine,
International Ice Hockey Federation Delegates, and USA Hockey Representatives



Dear Colleague:

RE: International Survey of Spinal and Head Injuries in Hockey to Document
Injuries After January 1, 1994 (i.e. the date of our last survey)

We would like to ask for your assistance in determining the international
incidence of head and spinal injuries in hockey. Since the first recorded
case of quadriplegia in hockey in 1967, the total number of these tragic
injuries recorded in our Centre has surpassed 241. Much effort is now being
made toward the prevention of spinal injuries in hockey. It is essential to
maintain accurate statistics in order to determine whether these prevention
efforts have been effective. The final report of our previous survey
recording all hockey, spinal and head injuries up to December 31, 1993 will
be published in the January, 1997 issue of the Clinical Journal of Sport
Medicine.

The hockey helmet has been very effective in preventing major acute brain
trauma. However, we are now confronted with the problem of repeated mild
concussions causing cumulative damage and permanent memory loss. Please be
sure to indicate cases with repeated concussions and tell us if there is
permanent neurological deficit.

Would you please fill our the enclosed questionnaire now whether or not you
have cases to report. The cases we ask you to report are those seen since
January 1, 1994 which was the date of our last survey. If you have
knowledge of cases before this date which have not been reported to us,
please report them as well.

Thank you for your continued cooperation.

Yours sincerely,


Charles H. Tator, MD, PhD, FRCS(C)
Professor and Chairman of Neurosurgery
University of Toronto
President, SportSmart Canada
and Think First Canada - Penzer d'abord

CHT/sa

Encl.