New Technology Serves as a Catalyst in Diagnosing, Simulating and Treating Concussions

January 25, 2017
New Technology Serves as a Catalyst in Diagnosing, Simulating and Treating Concussions

A breakthrough in the diagnosis, simulation, and treatment of concussions has been made through the development of virtual reality (VR) headsets.

Multiple VR headset devices have been introduced in the medical field to develop a deeper understanding of concussions and diagnose head injuries more efficiently and precisely. This technology could immensely help in diagnosing head injuries sustained during contact sports, such as football, lacrosse, soccer, and basketball.

According to the Virtual Reality Society, virtual reality can be defined as “a three-dimensional, computer-generated environment which can be explored and interacted with a person.”

Virtual reality headsets will change the manifestation of concussions in various ways. For example, when a CT scan doesn’t detect internal bleeding after a Traumatic Brain Injury, patients go untreated. This can be very dangerous to a person’s health; just because there is no internal bleeding, does not mean they didn’t receive a concussion. Virtual reality headsets will be able to detect any signs or symptoms of concussions so that the appropriate treatment can be given.

Learn below how virtual reality headsets can assist in the treatment and evaluation of concussions:

  1. EYE-SYNC: This device measures the patients’ “predictive attention performance”- a metric that evaluates cognitive and motor function. EYE-SYNC utilizes a visual stimulus to check if the ability to make spatial and temporal predictions has been affected after enduring a traumatic injury. The test takes 30 seconds, with results available in less than one minute.
  1. Samsung Gear VR and BrainBand: This VR headset is able to diagnose head injuries on the playing field. The headgear monitors trauma in a range of sports and alerts referees, coaches, and medics with real-time alerts of any injuries sustained. Additionally, this device is compatible with the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge.
  1. BrainGainz VR App: Developed by the University of Arizona, BrainGainz is a comprehensive VR app that addresses the high frequency of concussions in college football. The app puts the user in a college football field, challenging him to make a successful punt return. After enduring a handful of successful returns, BrainGainz implements a concussion-level force by a defensive player. After the hit occurs, the user can choose to sit out or continue playing. After being hit, the app simulates visual disorientation that is similar to a real concussion. BrainGainz aims to raise awareness among college football players of the damaging effects of concussions.

Head injuries such as concussions and traumatic brain injury can cause many health concerns later down the road. If a concussion goes undiagnosed or untreated, or if a person has received several concussions, they are more likely to suffer from CTE; Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy. This is why the detection, diagnosis, treatment, and recovery of concussions is crucial.

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If you or a loved one regularly participates in a contact sport, please be aware of the signs and symptoms of head injury and concussions. Additionally, be sure to follow all safety precautions associated with your sport including wearing the proper safety equipment and obeying rules and safety guidelines of the game.

If you or a loved one suffered a concussion or traumatic brain injury in any type of accident call Graves McLain at 918-359-6600 for help. When you call one of our experienced Tulsa Brain Injury attorneys, we will speak with you for FREE and determine the best course of action.

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