Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy is a brain condition caused by repeated blows to the head or repeated concussions. It is most common among professional athletes like boxers or football players, but can also affect high school and college-level athletes who may play soccer, football, or other potentially high-impact sports.
The repeated trauma causes progressive degeneration in brain tissue and can result in an abnormal build-up of a normal brain protein called tau. These clumps of tau are linked to Alzheimer's and other brain diseases. The most common symptoms of CTE include memory loss, confusion, and difficulty with impulse control, which can start several years, even decades after the sports were played.