On Wednesday, the NFLPA filed a grievance against the NFL for requiring players to sign waivers before being administered the pain-killing drug Toradol. CBSSports.com obtained a copy of one such waiver used by an NFL team and it shows a dangerously contradictory attitude toward player health and safety.
"I understand that Toradol can have a number of side effects," the waiver reads. "For example, it can have adverse effects on kidneys and kidney function. It should not be used by persons with kidney problems, active peptic ulcer disease or gastrointestinal bleeding or perforation, or a history of complications related to [non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs].
Additionally, the waiver indicates Toradol should not be used by persons with closed head injuries and/or bleeding in the brain."
"You drop your pants, you get the alcohol, they give you a shot, put the Band-Aid on, you go out and play,” Urlacher told Real Sports recently. "Not that big of a deal."
One portion of the waiver obtained by CBSSports.com reads: "A Task Force appointed by the NFL's Team Physicians Society studied Toradol and its use and made some recommendations."
The waiver then lists those recommendations in "paraphrased" form.
"ln typical situations, [Toradol] should be administered orally (i.e. in pill form)," reads the one recommendation.
The recommendation following is that Toradol "should not be injected (either intravenously or intramuscularly) except after an acute game-related injury in which significant visceral or central nervous system bleeding is not expected and where oral or intranasal pain medications are inadequate or not tolerated."
The waiver then offers a "Yes" or "No" checklist of previous medical conditions, including a "history of renal (kidney) problems" and a "history of closed-head injuries or bleeding in the brain."
The final page-and-a-half of the waiver serves as a "General Release From Liability" that releases the team in question, the team doctors, etc., from any liability relating to the use of Toradol.
"I am aware and I acknowledge that there can be serious risks of medical complications and
personal injury associated with taking the drug," the waiver reads. "Despite these risks, I am choosing to take it and l HEREBY AGREE TO VOLUNTARILY ASSUME AND ACCEPT ANY AND ALL RISKS RELATED TO TAKING TORADOL, WHETHER KNOWN OR UNKNOWN, INCLUDING RISK OF MEDICAL COMPLICATIONS, PERSONAL INJURY AND DEATH."
Below is a video of DeMaurice Smith, the director of the NFLPA, telling CBS This Morning about the association's problems with the medical waiver issue.