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In Illinois, Treating Brain Injuries May Now Be In Our Own Hands

Helping to heal traumatic brain injuries? There’s an app for that.

Although no smartphone technology is ready to entirely replace a trained physician when it comes to diagnosing and treating traumatic brain injuries, recognizing the signs of head trauma and obtaining medical attention quickly are two of the best ways to improve chances of recovery, and decrease the risk of death from the head injury. That’s where the phone comes in.

According to The News Observer, a pediatric neuropsychologist (a doctor specializing in the inner workings of children’s brains) has recently developed an application for smartphones designed to help coaches and parents of athletically-inclined children, recognize and properly treat brain injuries.

The application asks the user a series of questions intended to gauge the likelihood of brain trauma, and saves the responses so they can later be shared with a doctor. It also features a system for monitoring symptoms for up to several days following the injury, and creates a daily workout routine to ease the child back into a safe return after recovery.

Each year in the United States, approximately 1.4 million people suffer a traumatic brain injury. Often times these injuries are made worse by failing to recognize or treat the damage following a blow to the head. Even within a hospital setting, brain trauma is difficult to diagnose because no technology (for example x-rays, MRI, or CAT scan) is available to show a concussion, so medical providers are forced to rely on patient observation. Concussions, which are a form of traumatic brain injuries, are caused when the brain is shaken inside of the skull, and often go untreated because they are so difficult to diagnose.

The application is calculated to help people recognize possible brain trauma and advise them with regard to seeking medical attention. It’s available on iTunes for $3.99, and a portion of the proceeds go to assist research at the Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C.

Devastatingly, however, not all traumatic brain injuries are resolved by a speedy, uncomplicated recovery. At least 5.3 million Americans currently suffer from disabilities resulting from traumatic brain injuries. Our Chicago brain injury attorneys have fought tirelessly for the rights of hundreds of patients whose lives have been changed as a result of a traumatic brain injury. If you or a loved one has suffered a head injury that has significantly impacted your life, an attorney may be able to help you determine your rights.