Tablet App May Be Helpful in Monitoring Concussion Patients

Harvard University’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering is behind a new tablet application that may prove valuable in monitoring patients suffering from potentially serious concussions.

With the assistance of Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, the Harvard-backed institute demonstrated in a recent clinical study how the app could quickly and effectively assess neuromuscular performance.

“This new tool may hold great potential to augment existing protocols in a doctor’s neuromotor assessment toolbox,” said Wyss senior staff engineer Leia Stirling, who led the study. “It is portable, repeatable, quick to administer, and easy to perform.”

The technology — which the researchers informally called “NeuroAssess” — might one day be used on the playing field and in doctors’ offices worldwide.

“Just as your blood pressure is recorded during every visit,” Shirling says, “so could your neuromuscular score be tracked over time to determine progress through recovery and rehabilitation.”

Harvard Science has just posted a comprehensive summary of the clinical study. To review, click here. The study’s findings were also published this week in the online Journal of Gerontology: Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences.

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