North Texas

Concussion Survivor, Doctor Reflect on New Movie

A new motion picture shines an unflattering spotlight on America's favorite sport. Concussion is a true story about a doctor who took on the NFL over concussions.

Head injuries and concussions are concerning for people of all ages, and one North Texas man knows that first hand.

Darin Morgan used to play basketball with friends several times a week, but that stopped when an elbow collided with his temple several years ago.

"The impact was immediate. I could feel the ringing in the ears," Morgan said.

Morgan said he had all the tell tale signs of a concussion: headache, nausea and vomiting.

It's proof, he said, that concussions affect more than just high school and pro athletes – like the ones portrayed in the new movie, Concussion.

"They go at 100 miles an hour and hitting, and mine was a bunch of old men playing basketball type of thing. So I can totally understand how it's a big deal at the NFL level when people are running a mile a minute," Morgan said.

In the movie, Will Smith plays the doctor who uncovers the so-called truth about brain damage in football players who suffered from repeat concussions.

"They suffer blows to the head on a regular basis. Some of them are not of a degree that could necessarily damage them, but sometimes they get hit hard and can suffer a more severe concussion and then they're going to go out and potentially get hit again," said Dr. Brent Morgan, neurosurgeon at Medical Center of Plano.

If the brain is damaged once, Dr. Morgan said, it's more susceptible to another injury and the brain becomes tougher to heal.

He said the key is having a "back-to-play" plan.

"If you have an athlete experience a concussion, you want to get with someone who can give you that plan for back-to-play so you don't have further injury," Dr. Morgan said.

Darin Morgan said it took months for him to bounce back. He still shoots around with family but says he gave up playing basketball competitively after his concussion.

"I do miss it, but it was time for me to not take that risk anymore," he said.

Concussion opened Friday and is rated PG-13.

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