Researchers develop blood test to detect concussions in children

“This development of a blood test for concussion needs wider dissemination as a part of our cultural discussion about head impact sports.” Bill Chesnut, MD

Researchers develop blood test to detect concussions in children

CBS News (11/11, Welch) website reports that “a simple blood test can accurately detect concussions in children, a new study finds, and researchers hope one day it could be used on the field to help coaches, trainers and parents develop a plan of action on the spot.” The test “accurately identified the presence of brain injuries 94 percent of the time.” Lead study author Dr. Linda Papa, an emergency medicine physician said in a statement that this blood test “could ultimately change the way we diagnose concussions, not only in children, but in anyone who sustains a head injury.” The study was published in the journal Academic Emergency Medicine.

HealthDay (11/11, Reinberg) reports that the blood test measures levels of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), which is “found in cells that surround neurons in the brain,” and is released into the bloodstream when the brain is injured.

JAMA 11.11.15