The condition was first detected in boxers and other professional athletes.
Bennet Omalu and Will Smith together
In 2002, Omalu's autopsy of former Pittsburgh Steelers player Mike Webster. After years of struggle with cognitive and intellectual impairment, mood disorders, depression, drug abuse and suicidal thoughts, Webster died on 24 September 2002 at the age of 50.
After examining Webster, he also checked other football players including Dave Duerson and Andre Waters and detected the same kind of head trauma leading aggression and impaired judgment.
Here's an exclusive interview with Dr. Bennett Omalu and Will Smith; all about the movie 'Concussion':
Doctors knew that boxers suffered brain issues after years of regular head trauma. Still, Omalu was the first ever to associate the same issue with footballers.
Well, the discovery of Nigerian-born doctor made many Americans rethink the dangers of football.
The scenario of his discovery was well depicted in American biographical sports drama movie 'Concussion' released in November 2015. The role of Dr. Omalu is played by Will Smith and the role of his wife by Gugu Mbatha-Raw.
The discovery of CTE made everyone raise questions 'Is playing football truly safe for all?'
The NFL previously sent a letter to one of his colleagues and called him a fraud.
While speaking to Frontline in 2013, he said,
"They went to the press. They insinuated I was not practicing medicine; I was practicing voodoo."
He was even blamed trying to affect American lifestyle being originally from Nigeria.
"How dare you, a foreigner like you from Nigeria? What is Nigeria known for, the eighth most corrupt country in the world? Who are you? Who do you think you are to come to tell us how to live our lives?"
When the disease gained much attention in the United States, the NFL made some changes. The NFL stated it's view regarding the movie:
"We are encouraged by the ongoing focus on the critical issue of player health and safety. We have no higher priority. We all know more about this issue than we did 10 or 20 years ago. As we continue to learn more, we apply those learnings to make our game and players safer."
Well, it's time to acknowledge the possible hazards of the traumatic brain injury.
Bennet Omalu: Quick Facts
Born on 30 September 1968 in Nnokwa, Idemili South, Anambra State, Nigeria.
His birth sign is Libra.
He was born during the Nigerian Civil War.
He is of American and Nigerian Nationality; belongs to black ethnicity.
He studied at Federal Government College Enugu.
Also attended the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and completed his graduation with a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery in June 1990.
He was the first to detect and publish findings of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in American football players.
He worked as chief medical examiner of San Joaquin County, California.
He has an estimated net worth of about with an annual salary of $285,000.