Autumn Ford

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Over one million individuals in the U.S. report to hospitals for traumatic brain injuries (TBI) every year. Blunt TBIs are caused by injury due to the brain hitting the interior of the skull resulting in temporary loss of brain function. Usually, individuals who are older than 75 years are more likely to sustain a TBI. The current technology for TBIs includes neuroimaging and a neurological workup to evaluate the severity of the TBI including the Glasgow Coma score which assesses impaired consciousness. A neuro-exam consists of sensory testing, motor function, and mental status. However, these exams are only conducted in a medical facility setting. Computer-based TBI assessments, such as ImPACT testing, are provided to athletes before TBIs occur for baseline measurements. ImPACT also determines if athletes can play the upcoming season. However, these assessments are not accessible for all communities. It is critical that screening tools in the field for TBIs are accessible to decrease unnecessary exposure to radiation, create an improved medical plan, and determine the likelihood of the TBI. The Multi-modal Assessment and Therapy device (MAT) uses a moveable screen with a touch-sensitive array with LEDs to screen for TBIs in the field. Easy to roll up, it is inexpensive and simple to use for non-medical professionals. The MAT makes it possible to test light sensitivity, motor function, and various neurological activities for TBIs.

Faculty Mentor

Nicole Urban, Ph.D.

Academic Discipline




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