Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

A Headstart in Detecting Brain Damage Medlogic's New Scanner Can Show Internal and Possibly Life-Threatening Bleeding from a Head Injury

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

A Headstart in Detecting Brain Damage Medlogic's New Scanner Can Show Internal and Possibly Life-Threatening Bleeding from a Head Injury

Article excerpt

MedLogic, a privately held Sewickley-based company founded last year, has secured domestic distribution rights for a non-invasive scanner that can detect internal and possibly life-threatening bleeding from a head injury, a device that a noted local neurosurgeon says represents "a paradigm shift in how head injuries are going to be monitored."

The Infrascanner Model 2000 is a hand-held device that is placed against the head, then uses near-infrared light to show dark areas in or near the brain that could indicate dangerous bleeding.

"If there's any blood on the surface of the brain or on the lining of the skull, there's a big red spot that shows up," said neurosurgeon Joseph Maroon, vice chairman of neurological surgery at UPMC and member of MedLogic's medical advisory board.

The other major benefit, he said, is that absent any sign of bleeding, the device may help physicians decide it's not necessary to order a CAT scan. Such scans can expose patients to 100 to 400 times the radiation of a common X-ray.

MedLogic's officials see wide applications for their device in quickly, safely and cheaply letting medical personnel know how to respond to a possible concussion. It received FDA approval in January.

The cost will vary, company officials say, based on factors such as geographic location and they hope to develop lower cost models that would be affordable for EMS programs. A five-year lease costs about $480 per month.

The company has so far raised $600,000 from its founders and $150,000 from one local angel investor. Peter H. Thomson, president and general counsel, said there is still "a small window of opportunity" for those interested in investing, but "we are comfortable that window will diminish once sales peak."

Potential markets include sports medicine, veterans hospitals, urgent care, EMS, emergency rooms, industrial sites, nursing homes, cruise ships and amusement parks. MedLogic officials expect the hand- held devices will some day be as common as defibrillators.

With growing attention to the risks of concussions, it's also easy to imagine equipping trainers at high school football games using such devices. …

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