In a prospective investigation of neurobehavioral functioning in young boxers, 13 pugilists and 13 matched control subjects underwent tests of attention, information-processing rate, memory, and visuomotor coordination and speed. The results disclosed more proficient verbal learning in the control subjects, whereas delayed recall and other measurements of memory did not differ between the two groups. Reaction time was faster in the boxers than in the control subjects, but no other differences were significant. Ten subjects in each group were retested 6 months later and exhibited improvement in their neuropsychological performance as compared to baseline measurements. However, there were no differences in scores between the boxers and the control subjects at the follow-up examination or in the magnitude of improvement from baseline values. Magnetic resonance imaging, which was performed in nine of the boxers, disclosed normal findings.