The use of video-oculography may provide clinicians with improved capabilities for diagnosing and managing concussions, according to researchers.

The study, recently published in the Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation, was conducted by researchers from Neuro Kinetics Inc (NKI) and Allegheny Health Network (AHN).

Using NKI’s I-Portal VNG (video nystagmography) technology, the study compared 50 concussed high school athletes who were diagnosed by AHN concussion specialists to 170 high school athletes with no history of concussion. In those who were concussed, the device was used to assess oculomotor (movement of the eye) function, vestibular (sense of balance) function, and reaction time—otherwise known as ‘OVRT’—at various stages following their head injury.

Multiple deficits in OVRT were found in the students who were concussed relative to the control population, according to a media release from Neuro Kinetics Inc.

“Currently, the process of diagnosing a person with concussion is subjective because a physician must interpret results of neurocognitive testing and/or brain imaging. The results of this study suggest that a range of OVRT testing can be used to objectively, reliably and non-invasively evaluate and diagnose concussion,” says Alex Kiderman, PhD, chief technology officer, NKI.

The study also reveals an unexpected correlation between concussions that were more than 21 days post-injury and a metric known as optokinetic nystagmus (OKN) gain. Findings suggested OKN gain appears to be closely associated with concussions that do not repair quickly, and which may impact patients well beyond the initial incident.

“The study confirmed something we had long suspected about concussions, namely that certain types of oculomotor deficits may persist much longer than others. While further research is needed to fully explore whether this test can indicate long-term consequences of mild traumatic brain injury, this is a significant finding that could ultimately impact physicians’ recommendations regarding how quickly an individual can return to play and/or routine activities, such as driving,” states Edward Snell, MD, director of primary sports medicine, Allegheny Heath Network, and head team physician for the Pittsburgh Pirates, in the release.

 [Source(s): Neuro Kinetics Inc, PRWeb]