UFC Extends Partnership with Cleveland Clinic, Pledges $1 Million to Brain Health Center

By Tristen Critchfield Feb 5, 2016
The Ultimate Fighting Championship has renewed its support of the Cleveland Clinic’s Professional Fighters Brain Health Study, extending its partnership with a five-year agreement and pledging $1 million to the Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health in Las Vegas.

“Research and awareness are key in setting new standards for athlete health and safety,” UFC Chief Operating Officer Ike Lawrence Epstein said in a release. “UFC is always looking for opportunities to invest in industry-leading health and wellness programs and providing resources to develop its athletes inside and outside the Octagon.”

The study was established in 2011 in hopes of detecting initial signs of brain injury as well as potential long-term neurological effects on athletes in MMA and other sports that are exposed to head trauma. The UFC’s $1 million dollar pledge is the largest contribution from a combat sport entity, according to the release.

So far, nearly 600 athletes have voluntarily elected to participate in the study, which allows the fighters to receive free MRI scans and other brain tests. As the study continues, fighters, promotions and athletic commissions will, in theory, have information to be able to improve safety in the sport and the long-term welfare of its participants.

“We have learned quite a bit in the first four years of the study about how repetitive head trauma affects the brain and how we can detect accumulating injury,” Charles Bernick, M.D., Associate Medical Director at the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health said. “The involvement of the fighting community and organizations like UFC will only help us better understand the field and protect our athletes. Their support has helped sustain the infrastructure of this very large study and will allow us to follow the participants over longer periods of time and develop ways to improve safety in combat sports, along with others exposed to repetitive head trauma.”


Comments powered by Disqus
<h2>Fight Finder</h2>