Can Concussion Diagnosis Be A Urine Test Away?

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Researchers from the University of Lethbridge and the University of Calgary have been approved for a provisional patent for their new concussion detecting urine analysis test for concussion. 

Concussions have been an issue in almost all sport affecting athletes at all levels and all ages. Concussion protocols are evolving all the time however knowing when to allow 'return to play' remains an issue. Return to play timing can be difficult to set because many internal signs of concussion can't be measured. Because each brain's response to damage is unique each brain's symptoms vary. 

The new urine analysis looks at 18 biomarkers in urine that are directly related to the presence of a concussion. The test is particularly valuable because it not only diagnoses the presence of a concussion but can also determine whether an individual has recovered from their injury and is ready to return to normal activities and to sport play. They will be relatively cheap and easy to administer as well.

The researchers hope that this test will be available for field use to assist in concussion diagnosis rapidly and with accuracy. The new test will also allow for better therapies, and for targeted return to play plans for athletes.

Eventually, the researchers hope that because the brain releases certain biomarkers when it is injured that the same kind of test can be used to identify other brain conditions like stroke, Alzheimer’s, and brain cancers rapidly and accurately.

According to their press release:

The next phase for the group is to secure additional funding as they seek licensing opportunities with biotech companies to continue testing and finalize the patent. Their initial work has included samples primarily from 16-year-old male hockey players. Eventually, with more samples and testing, they expect to create standardized curves that represent baseline and acute biomarker levels across gender and age.

 “We’re very early in this process and very excited about its potential,” says Metz. “We want our tests to work effectively for males, females, different ages and different neurological conditions. With collaborators, such as Dr. Debert, who have access to different patient populations, we’ll really be able to cover more ground.”

You can read more about the research here.

If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in an accident and suffered a concussion, traumatic brain injury or another serious injury you should contact the experienced personal injury lawyers at Deutschmann Law today for your free initial consultation.