Colin Hendry says he is concerned about the prospect of getting dementia as he signed up to a new study.

The Rovers title-winner will take part in the PFA Scotland’s new PREVENT dementia study.

Hendry lived up to his Braveheart nickname with towering displays for Rovers and Scotland, but the 55-year-old says he is concerned about the lasting impact of his playing career.

And he says he has been deeply affected by the diagnosis of those close to him, including former Rovers assistant manager Tony Parkes.

“My dad’s dad suffered from it. Back then it was called a hardening of the arteries,” Hendry said.

“Recently, I’ve spoken to people at the Lancashire FA who look after my old coach at Blackburn, Tony Parkes.

“We had 10 years together there but he’s in a home now and when I see him, he doesn’t really know me.

“Tony is a shadow of what he was because he used to be a joker, always trying to catch you out.

“He was the greatest assistant coach I knew and he always had a story. He was sharp, really quick.

“When I see him now, it’s just so sad. To have been involved with him as a coach and to see him now, I can’t really put it into words.”

Hendry enjoyed two spells at Rovers, first between 1987 and 1989 that saw him score the winner in the Full Members Cup success.

He returned in November 1991 and helped the club to promotion to the Premier League and then the title in 1994/95.

But a playing career that spanned 20 years included him demonstrating his aerial prowess, and Hendry says a desire to find out if there is any lasting damage as a result has seen him sign up to the study.

He added: “If you think of the heading I’ve done in my career and the head injuries I’ve had – I think there’s a good chance that I won’t be 100 percent.

“I was doing something on a daily basis that no other human being would do – hitting his head against something over and over again.

“When you’re a professional, you need to practise. I would head balls every day after training.

“I’d be heading between 100 to 150 balls over two days. Whether it was right on my forehead or if I was trying to judge it with a jump, I used different techniques.

“I’ll be up there when it comes to risk factors. But I’d rather find out, for the sake of my family.

“I want to know the results, whether they’re good, bad or indifferent.”

Hendry’s former team-mate Chris Sutton has lobbied the English PFA to fund research after his own father Mike died of the disease.

As for Hendry, he says his family have pushed for him to be tested, and while he isn’t advocating for a wholescale ban on heading in the game he believes the issue is one that can’t be overlooked.

“It’s important to me that it’s analysed to a degree where if there’s a prevention that can be put in place, it’s done as soon as we can," he told the Daily Record.

“But I’m open to it now. I can’t say I’m excited about it – there’s obviously a concern because of the risk involved.

“But if this can help people further down the line, players younger than me, who might have issues, it’s important.”