Toradol waiver sends players to Wikipedia for more info

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It appears, as one PFT reader pointed out on Twitter, that December 12 is the official date for Festivus, since the NFLPA picked that day for the airing of grievances.

But the grievance aired on Wednesday is an important one, regarding the efforts of teams and their doctors to avoid liability for the potential consequences from the use of Toradol, a non-narcotic administered by shot to relieve any and all pain a player is experiencing.

PFT has obtained a copy of the three-page waiver that players are asked to sign before receiving the Toradol shot.  The first paragraph summarizes broadly some of the major risks.  The second paragraph refers the players for more information to, yes, the Wikipedia page for the drug.

The rest of the document contains a through but convoluted overview of the recommendations made by the NFL’s Toradol Task Force, a series of boxes to check regarding the player’s medical history, and a lengthy release from liability written in legalese.

As a practical matter, the players who want the shot won’t be studying the document and conducting research and contemplating risks and weighing alternatives.  They just want the shot.  So like clicking “yes” at the bottom of the never ending terms-of-service scroll for the latest iTunes update, the players will do whatever they have to do to get the shot.

Since the players are far more concerned about playing than the potential complications from taking the drug that allows them to play, the league needs to be far more concerned about ensuring the health of the players than limiting or avoiding liability if there’s a health consequence.  And if the league wants players to make truly informed judgments about whether to take Toradol, the league needs to do a much better job of making the risks known that providing them a link to Wikipedia.

Then again, maybe the league doesn’t want them to truly understand the risks.  Maybe the league wants them to just sign the document and take the shot, so that they can suit up and play.  What better way to do that than to put in front of them a three-page, single-spaced alphabet junkyard that they’ll quickly sign and say, “Give me my shot”?

21 responses to “Toradol waiver sends players to Wikipedia for more info

  1. If all they are concerned with is playing then they should just shut up and sign the waiver. The players want to take part in “risky” behavior and then have someone else to blame when the actual risk comes due. They (and society in general) are always looking for someone else to blame rather than themselves. Personal responsibility, integrity and even sportsmanship are concepts lost on many of these guys.

  2. Actually, I am sure that over 75% of people turn to Wikipedia for their information. While it may be the butt of a lot of jokes, they do have factual information on their topics.

  3. The wikipedia page can be changed by anyone, so I could write that toradol has no side effects and will make you the best player in the league. Pretty bad idea to have a link from a legal document to a wikipedia page that is inherently subjective although usually factual.

  4. This is a no win scenario for the NFL. They players are saying they are to ignorant to inform themselves and make a responsible decision. This is all just setting up the league for another monster civil suit. I hope the league finds a way to eliminate the use of this drug. Thereby forcing the players to make a choice about their lives post football. I support the waiver.

  5. If someone chooses to ignore the risks of a medicine, that is THEIR responsibility. Not the NFL’s.

    The NFL provides the information and a clear waiver form about its risks/dangers, but it can’t force people to read or care about them. If you sign your name, you accept personal responsibility. Period.

  6. According to brees, the nfl has lost credibility with the players (not sure the truth of that other than a few saints players). The likelihood that the players would trust a website detailing the effects and potential dangers of toradol is low. So if the nfl’s medical staff vetted the wiki page for toradol and deemed it accurate, who cares where the players are provided the information from. Since most people. (And in my profession, pet owners) believe Internet information over actual medical proof, maybe wiki is the way for the nfl to get the information out in a way the players understand without being accused of manipulation

  7. No reasonable health professional would use Wikipedia as a source of information, especially to make life changing decisions from. At least give the players the official information approved by the FDA that all drugs have.

  8. While most people turn to it for information, it shouldn’t be used to source stories or for legal purposes.

  9. This issue has been so overblown, it has the same potential side effects as any NSAID, look at the warnings on advil and tylenol. As with any drug if you take the recommended dose you most likely will be ok and if you take too much it could cause problems. I think most of them will be ok taking it once a week 16 times a year, I’m sure they are putting much more harmful things into their body.

  10. So the NFL now should be babysitter to the players who want to ignore the dangers?? You have been writing about how badly the NFL screwed everything up when they got involved in trying to keep players safe from bounties, but now they step back and let players decide what is safe for themselves and you bash them for that too. Does the NFL EVER do anything right, Florio?

    I had a so much more eloquently stated opinion with no cursing or immaturity posted, but appearantly only the writer of the article is allowed to have an opinion. Wonder how long until they remove this one too.

  11. I don’t know what to do with this site anymore. Do you guys need an editor? I’m very good at proofreading for both grammatical soundness and actual content. A lot of this stuff has neither.

  12. C’mon Florio! Leaving the lawyering to me today? I’m not a bright New Yorker lawyer like you, just a country lawyer from Georgia.

    The reference to Wikipedia is a fatal flaw in the informed consent part of the waiver’s process. There’s no way that Wiki can be admissible! You know this, man!

  13. This is more of a non-story than you think. As someone else stated, this is a safe drug. Like a stronger NSAID (Motrin). I give this drug 5 times/shift in the ER. In general, NFL players are healthy so it’s really not an issue for them. Chronic use and over use can lead to badness, just like every other medication.

  14. Are the players being forced to take the injections or are they doing so of their own free will? No one is forcing them to inject a medicine.

    Is there really anyone with half a brain that thinks injecting a pain killer on a semi regular basis won’t have a long term effect? Is there anyone that doesn’t understand that ALL medicine has the possibility of side effect?

    And as far as putting a link to wikipeadia… Well, maybe there is a chance they take a look at it on their smart phone before taking the shot. Probably not. But, isn’t the shot being administered by a medical professional? Shouldn’t THEY be able to explain the risks? If you go to the doctor, don’t you ask about the medicine BEFORE they inject you with it?

    Let’s not forget that some of these guys inject PEDs like steroids or HGH. If they aren’t concerned about the effects of those, why would they be concerned about the effects of Toradol?

    Just sign the waiver so you can’t sue the league and take the shot that you would be taking even if they told you it would make you see little pink Christian Aguilera monsters.

  15. …the league needs to be far more concerned about ensuring the health of the players…

    Shouldn’t the NFLPA be concerned about the players health. Notice they aren’t saying much so that they can of course come back and sue.

    Players and the union are utter hypocrites. They claim the league doesn’t really care about safety but which entity steadfastly refuses almost every initiative that promotes it (wearing more pads, safer helmets, HGH testing, punishing hard hits, bounty programs, etc.).

  16. I am sure that the docs do give the basic run down on risks, well at least until the players tell them to stow it and give them the shot. As well as answering any questions. The problem probably is that nobody is asking questions because right now they don’t care.

    That won’t stop the players from suing later saying that the league and docs didn’t tell them.

    The waiver is something to make them take responsibility.

    The link to Wiki is probably so that the players will something to look to as most of them probably are either too lazy or not smart enough to find it on their own.

    This is the same thing that most docs do with their patients with any medicine that they give.

  17. Taking certain OTC pain meds and drinking can lead to liver damage if they are both done long term. It’s disclosed on bottles. How much you wanna bet there have been lawsuits on this already? I am sick to death of “everyone is responsible but the one who takes the risks” nation. Should people REALLY have to be told not to take their hairdryers and use them in the bathtub? I’d argue that anyone who would deserves what they get.

  18. Actually, Wikipedia is a pretty accurate and reliable source of medical information for the lay person. Obviously it is not a medical journal, but to the NFL player it provides reasonably accurate, up-to-date information on most medications.

  19. Seeptermean, I was thinking the same thing.

    Wiki is a good place to start but I wouldn’t want to depend on it.

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