Jim McMahon knows the questions will come — about his health, about his mind, about the head trauma he has experienced in his life after football that, for long stretches, has left him severely depressed and debilitated.
Yet on Tuesday evening, as McMahon arrived at Soldier Field for a 30-year reunion celebration of the Bears‘ 1985 Super Bowl season, the charismatic quarterback expressed at least some hope.
His severe headaches and overall mental well-being?
“Some days better than others,” McMahon said. “I don’t know when it’s going to happen. Whenever my neck gets out of alignment and fluid starts backing up into my brain, it’s miserable until I get it fixed and get it adjusted. Then the pain at least goes away.”
McMahon’s health issues have been well documented. He has been diagnosed with early onset dementia and still struggles with memory loss, severe headaches and depression. At times, the pressure on his skull becomes overwhelming. He experiences vision problems and speech difficulties.
But McMahon, 56, also believes he experienced a medical breakthrough recently after chiropractors in New York contacted him in their belief they could help alleviate some of the major problems he had been experiencing.
In ESPN’s forthcoming “30 for 30” documentary, “The ’85 Bears” — which will be shown at a private advance screening Wednesday night at AMC River East with McMahon expected to be in attendance — McMahon’s union with Atlas Orthogonal chiropractor Scott Rosa is chronicled as he continues to deal with the probability of significant brain damage.
In the film, Rosa reveals his diagnosis of McMahon, which showed that some of the former quarterback’s pain and head problems stemmed from neck misalignment that was restricting the flow of spinal fluid and causing toxic proteins to pool in his brain.
McMahon subsequently has received treatment that adjusts his spinal cord and regulates the flow of spinal fluid. In the film, McMahon said the first time he had the procedure, “it was like the toilet flushed. I could feel this stuff actually leaving my brain.”
Suddenly, his vision and speech improved.
“Thank God those doctors in New York found the problem,” he added Tuesday evening. “Had I gone to a neurosurgeon, they probably would have just drilled a hole in my head and drained the fluid and not found the problem. These guys at least found the problem and can keep me semi-coherent most of the time.
“I know when (the problem) starts happening. I start getting headaches and all I want to do is lie down.”
McMahon has been told to return to New York for treatment every three to four months but believes he may need to increase the regularity of those visits.
“Something’s just not right yet,” he said. “I have two blockages in my neck that they’re concerned about. And the degeneration of some of my disks is not doing too good. Now that I know what’s going on, it’s not frightening. I just know what I have to do when it happens.”
Source: Chicago Tribune