Health
2:50 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

New Technology for Managing Concussions Being Used in Southwestern PA

Allegheny Health Network's Craig Castor demonstrates the C3 Logix system on an athlete. The program tests for concussion symptoms.
Allegheny Health Network's Craig Castor demonstrates the C3 Logix system on an athlete. The program tests for concussion symptoms.
Credit Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

New mobile technology being used by the Allegheny Health Network will allow physicians to better diagnose and treat concussions.

C3 Logix uses a computerized neurocognitive exam through a unique iPad app. The iPad is strapped to a patient’s back and can detect even minute movement.

“It really brings together everything into one picture and allows a new battery of tests using a better way of managing and evaluating,” said Dr. Edward Snell, director of the Sports Concussion Clinic at Allegheny Health Network, “rather than relying on maybe me looking at the patient and seeing if they’re fumbling or they’re falling.”

Snell said concussion symptoms can very subjective and often, clinical findings aren’t enough to adequately assess the degree of brain injury. Through a limited licensing agreement with developer iComet Technologies, Allegheny Health Network will be the sole provider of C3 Logix in 29 counties in southwest Pennsylvania.

“I think this is going to be a little piece to a bigger puzzle and it’s going to make us able to manage these concussions a lot more effectively, a lot safer and allow people to get back to play in a manner that’s better, in the long run, for their health,” Snell said.

With more attention on concussions and their effects, more are being diagnosed and treated, and they remain a serious concern throughout the country.

“The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that at least two million concussions occur each year,” said Dr. Patrick DeMeo, chair of orthopedics at Allegheny Health Network. “Of those, approximately 20 percent are sports related, approximately 500,000 sports-related concussions occurring each year in the United States.”

C3 Logix is currently used at more than 50 schools in northeast Ohio and has been used to assess more than 7,000 athletes in the past year.

Athletic trainers at Allegheny Health Network began baseline testing with the system this month, and there are plans to expand the C3 Logix program to all 14 school districts that receive their training services. The system is also being used at Robert Morris University and by the Pittsburgh Riverhounds soccer team.