AUG 20, 2018 06:15 AM PDT

A New Tool For Detecting and Treating Concussion

When a significant force is applied to the head from an impact or other injuries a concussion can result. When the energy is enough to jar the brain inside the skull, it can cause brain tissue to smash against the skull.

The bones of the head are designed to protect the brain, and it does, but when an accident, fall or other injury causes the brain to move around significantly, it's like shaking an egg. Chances are, when you look inside the egg, there will be damage. The same happens with brain tissue. According to the CDC, every 23 seconds in the United States, someone suffers a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Repeated trauma can contribute to neurological deficits later in life, including dementia and Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE)

Correctly diagnosing a concussion can be tricky. There are 21 different symptoms associated with concussions. Not every concussion will result in a loss of consciousness, and no two head injury patients are alike in their presentation and recovery. Getting the right information is critical when a TBI has occurred. A new piece of technology to help physicians diagnose concussion could help patients get help sooner and recover faster. It's called the BrainScope One, and it's a non-invasive brain sensor that can assess a patient's brain health. It was approved by the FDA under the name Ahead 300 in early 2017 for use in diagnosing mild TBI. The system provides a multi-dimensional assessment of brain function including EEG measures, cognitive performance tests, and standard, digitized concussion assessment tests.

The system is being used in multiple research studies, especially within the Brain Initiative under the auspices of the Department of Defense. The company has more than $27 million in defense research contracts. Also, the system is being used in a clinical trial being conducted by pharmaceutical company Prevacus. The company is currently developing drugs to treat TBI and other neurological conditions and will be using the device in some upcoming Phase 1b clinical trials. The system will be used as an objective measure biomarkers for brain injury and assessments for brain function.

The device is also becoming popular in urgent care clinic settings. Going to the emergency room after an injury or accident can be time consuming and expensive. Maryland and New York, urgent care locations including Physicians Now and Five Star Urgent Care are using the handheld device to assess patients for a head injury. It also has applications in combat, since it's small and easily transported to field locations that could not support a CT scanner or MRI imaging. Finally, the technology was developed with the help of an award from the National Football League. In 2015, when the league was dealing with the fallout from player lawsuits and CTE diagnoses, and concussions were on the rise, funding the system was part of their efforts to address the concerns of retired players and health professionals. Check out the video below to see how urgent care centers near Syracuse will use the technology.

Sources: BrainScope Digital Journal CDC

About the Author
  • I'm a writer living in the Boston area. My interests include cancer research, cardiology and neuroscience. I want to be part of using the Internet and social media to educate professionals and patients in a collaborative environment.
You May Also Like
SEP 22, 2019
Cannabis Sciences
SEP 22, 2019
Growing up high: new insights into how cannabis changes the adolescent brain
During adolescence, important cognitive functions develop. Adolescence is a highly sensitive period for brain development as it represents a time when regions of the frontal cortex in charge...
SEP 22, 2019
Drug Discovery & Development
SEP 22, 2019
Promising Hypertension Drug for Alzheimer Disease
In a study led by the American Heart Association, the blood pressure drug nilvadipine (a calcium channel blocker) was found to increase blood flow to the b...
SEP 22, 2019
Drug Discovery & Development
SEP 22, 2019
Compound Found in Wine May Treat Anxiety
A study published in the journal Neuropharmacology claims that a compound found in red wine could be used as therapeutic for treating anxiety and depressio...
SEP 22, 2019
Technology
SEP 22, 2019
Motorized prosthetic arm can sense touch, move with your thoughts
Picking up an egg without crushing it seems like an easy task for anyone—but for Keven Walgamott, who lost his left hand and part of his arm from a m...
SEP 22, 2019
Drug Discovery & Development
SEP 22, 2019
Can Psychedelics Treat Alcoholism?
Some of the first research on psychedelics in clinical settings was to assess their efficacy in treating alcoholism. In fact, LSD-based treatments for the ...
SEP 22, 2019
Plants & Animals
SEP 22, 2019
These Are Some of Nature's Brightest Animals
Lots of people are quick to dismiss animal intelligence as inferior to human intelligence, but let the record show that plenty of animals have earned a rep...
Loading Comments...