Do You Think You Have a Concussion? Try Spitting…

U.S. researchers say it may be possible to diagnose and predict the duration of a concussion… by examining your spit.  The new approach has potential for children, teens and young adults.

According to the study, a third of children who experience a traumatic brain injury also develop prolonged concussion symptoms (PCS).  These symptoms can include nausea, fatigue, dizziness, confusion and headache, as well as memory, learning and attention problems.  “To our knowledge,” the researchers say, “there are currently no objective or easily administered tests for predicting prolonged concussion symptoms.”

The researchers studied 52 patients aged 7 to 21 years old who had received a clinical diagnosis of concussion.  When examining the patients’ saliva, they found five microRNAs that could identify prolonged concussion symptoms with 85 percent accuracy.

“Salivary miRNA measurement may provide an accurate, noninvasive technique for identifying children with PCS,” the study concludes.  “Such information could reduce parental anxiety and improve care for patients by providing a simple tool for concussion management.”  The study also stresses that further validation of this approach is needed.

The researchers used an Agilent Bioanalyzer System to assess RNA yield and quality.

For Research Use Only.  Not for use in diagnostic procedures.


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