Earlier this summer, BioStock reported that PolarCool’s PolarCap System is being used by the Swedish national handball team. Now, BioStock can report that the PolarCap System was used by the Swedish National American Football Team in the IFAF European Championship. The team’s physio Justus Bejnö commented on the importance of having PolarCap ready during competitions.
As previously reported by BioStock, close to 4 million athletes suffer from concussions each year in the US alone. Among the sports topping the list with the highest concussion rate is American football, along with rugby and ice hockey, and the rates among young adults and children are even higher in some cases.
Studies show that early-stage cooling is critical in preserving brain function and resisting long-term cognitive impairment in the event of a concussion. PolarCool’s PolarCap System does this by applying non-invasive, surface cooling technology. The device is easy to use, it deploys quickly, and it delivers highly efficient cooling immediately after injury, and thus has the potential to be used in a number of contact sports where concussions risk putting not only athletes’ health on the line, but their careers as well.
PolarCap being used in professional sports
The clinical evidence for PolarCap System is building up. In June, a final report from the 5-year clinical study conducted in partnership with the Swedish professional ice hockey league, SHL, and with the support of the players’ union, SICO, shows a significant reduction in the proportion of absence from gameplay for players who have suffered from concussion but received immediate care with PolarCap.
Professional sports teams have taken notice, both national and international. Earlier this summer PolarCool announced that the Swedish men’s national handball team signed an agreement to use PolarCap System in upcoming international competitions, as did the professional German ice hockey league team Die Adler Mannheim. In a comment, Adler Mannheim’s team physician, Oliver Lanczik, stated:
»The incidence of concussion is perceived more and more in contact sports, while the therapeutic alternatives are somewhat limited. We therefore welcome the PolarCap System as a promising new tool for the acute treatment of concussions and are convinced that we can thus offer improved medical care for our players.«
Potential for further expansion
Most recently, BioStock has learned that PolarCap System has been used during the International Federation of American Football (IFAF) European Championship by the Swedish national team.
The market for American football is very interesting for PolarCool as the problems with concussions there are well known. The absolute largest market is in the US, where the sport is very popular, but the sport is also on the rise in Europe. In fact, just this year, a new professional league has taken off in Europe, the European League of Football, which is expected to expand even further for the 2022 season.
BioStock was able to get in touch with the Swedish American football national team’s physio Justus Bejnö who wanted to make the PolarCap System available to the Swedish National Team.
Justus Bejnö, could you tell us a bit more about your role for the Swedish American Football Federation and the National Team??
– I am the chairman of the medical committee for Swedish American Football Federation, ultimately responsible to ensure the safety and medical staff availability during national competition.
From your perspective, how big is the problem of concussions in sports in general, especially with regard to young adults who want to make a career in sports?
– I believe that there are challenges with head trauma, however, with the appropriate safety measures, education and equipment, I think these challenges can be easily addressed.
How did you learn about PolarCap and why did you decide to make it part of your health protocol?
– I was approached by PolarCool prior to the Semifinal in the European Championship Game between Sweden and Finland and was introduced to the product, and I do believe that the research that has been done in regard to the acute treatment of concussion is promising.
Was PolarCap been deployed during this European Championship?
– Yes, PolarCap was put to use during the Semifinal in the European Championship game between Sweden and Finland.
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