Military Connection: Concussion Coach App: By Debbie Gregory

Concussion CoachEach year, thousands of military service members are treated for concussions and traumatic brain injuries. These injuries occur can occur in both combat and training environments. But brain injuries are not limited to members of the armed forces, they are also an issue for thousands of civilians as well.

Brain injuries can happen anywhere, and during nearly any activity. It is for this reason that Micaela Cornis-Pop of McGuire Veterans Affairs Medical Center headed a team that developed a mobile app for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

The app, called Concussion Coach, is currently available for iPads and iPods, and is expected to be available on the Android platform soon.

The VA-sponsored mobile app was developed by rehabilitation services and the National Center for PTSD at the VA. Concussion Coach supports self-management of symptoms related to concussion.

The app is intended to provide education about concussion, and provide a self-assessment designed to identify symptoms that are often associated with a concussion. These questions are meant to ascertain whether you are dizzy, have issues with balance, have a headache after a collision, etc. Concussion Coach also offers its users a number of tools that can be helpful when problems occur. The app also contains a section that assists the user manage their concussion symptoms.

Concussion Coach also guides its users to additional resources and support. The app provides links to trusted internet websites that contain further information on concussion, links to resources at the VA, and information on how to find professional care for your concussion symptoms.

The design of the app was shaped through asking Veterans what they would want to see in an app of this nature. Although it was created by the VA for the betterment of Veterans, Concussion Coach is available to the public, who can also benefit from it. Cornis-Pop foresees parents using Concussion Coach, including its self- assessment and support features, in the unfortunate event that their children get injured.

“It can be used by anybody with the understanding that this does not diagnose ***or*** manage traumatic brain injury. It is a helpful tool to have in discussing with a specialized provider” Cornis-Pop said.

Concussion Coach is available to the public as an iPad ***or*** iPhone app. You can download the complimentary app at the app store.

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Military Connection: Concussion Coach App: By Debbie Gregory