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Girls need helmets to play lacrosse

Northport's Cortney Fortunato winds up to shoot and

Northport's Cortney Fortunato winds up to shoot and score against Bay Shore. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

Regarding "Concussions & girls lacrosse" [News, June 5], I have worked as a pediatrician in this area for many years. I have long not understood why girls wear virtually no equipment.

The notion that boys wear helmets and still get concussions is not a reason, as there certainly would be more concussions if they didn't have helmets. Nothing can totally eliminate concussions, but helmets definitely decrease the severity.

People feel that because the rules are different in girls' lacrosse, they don't need helmets. There are laws against drunken driving, running red lights and speeding, so I guess we don't need seat belts, as no one will get into accidents.

Players break rules both intentionally and unintentionally. I don't see any good reason why helmets should not be mandatory. Then we can try to get wrist guards introduced.

Dr. Neil Bellovin, Commack

I have been involved with head injuries for contact sports and all recreational activities for more than 30 years. Although headband headgear was designed and approved for soccer, women's lacrosse teams have been using the headband for several years with a significant reduction in head injuries.

The headband has been independently tested and found to be able to successfully absorb and dissipate most of the impact, thus reducing the risk of head injuries. It should also be noted that there is no helmet in the world that can completely eliminate concussive injuries.

Carl J. Abraham, Great Neck

Editor's note: The writer is a safety engineer who has patented protective headgear and other products.