Saturday November 12, 2016
A game-changing blood test for concussion diagnosis
more stories from this episode
- What will a Trump presidency mean for science?
- How the Ebola virus became more contagious in humans
- Interpreting the alien interpreters in the movie Arrival
- Birds with smaller brains more likely to be shot by hunters
- Chicken bone discovery reveals a rich backstory
- A game-changing blood test for concussion diagnosis
- Full Episode
Concussions have been very difficult to diagnose in the past. Part of the problem has been that the diagnosis relies on the personal assessment of the patient as well as the judgement of a clinician, and neither is entirely accurate.
But a new study has found that a form of blood profiling known as 'metabolomics' can provide concussion assessments with up to 92 per cent accuracy.
Dr. Douglas Fraser, a physician at the Children's Hospital in London, Ontario, and an associate professor at Western University has found that metabolites in the blood — in particular lipids — show a consistent pattern when the brain has been concussed.
More from the CBC: New concussion blood test claims 90 per cent accuracy
This pattern can be determined by a simple blood test, provided the test is taken within 72 hours of the brain trauma. Analyzing the pattern of metabolites in the blood over time can also help determine when a full recovery has been made.
- Metabolomic: Metabolomics profiling of concussion in adolescent male hockey players
- Western Universtiy: Western and Lawson scientists develop game-changing blood test for concussions
- Schulich Medicine & Dentistry: Concussion Research