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Summary:

This medical diagnostic can detect brain swelling or bleeding, says new research, and is a cheap substitute for CT scans.

veps-brain-coil
photo: Cesar A. Gonzalez

This head-mounted coil can’t read your mind, but it can tell if you’ve experienced brain trauma. The cheap medical diagnostic, a volumetric electromagnetic phase-shift spectroscopy (VEPS) clinical coil, is meant to function as a substitute to full CT scans in parts of the world where those aren’t available, and has now been field tested in Mexico.

The VEPS technique isn’t quite the same as reading brain waves: it looks at perturbations made by the brain tissue in a weak electromagnetic field. If excess fluid is present due to swelling or bleeding, it will show up as blips in the conductivity. This can be indicative of brain trauma that might not be externally obvious, but that could require time-sensitive treatment.

A small-scale study using the VEPS coil has now validated that it can indeed distinguish between healthy adults and individuals who were known to have brain trauma from earlier CT scans. This means that VEPS could stand in for CT scans in places like rural Mexico. Writing in the journal PLOS ONE, the researchers also demonstrated that VEPS can tell brain edema, or swelling, from bleeding. Another insight from the study was that the aging brain’s electromagnetic transmission starts to resemble that of a younger brain with a hematoma (bleeding).

Two of the authors, Boris Rubinsky of UC Berkeley and Cesar Gonzalez from Mexico’s National Polytechnic Institute, are patent holders on some VEPS-related IP that has been licensed to a company called Cerebrotech. Cerebrotech has received funding from TriStar Technology Ventures and the National Space Biomedical Research Institute. The research published today, however, was not done with Cerebrotech’s involvement.

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  1. paul martin Tuesday, May 14, 2013

    I have not followed any of the links from this article but I would caution comparing an pseudo invasive system with this one. There is much research into CT and clearly the enormous equipment involved has a weighty integrity. I do not decry rf but tried usinr another wavelength (and set of physical principles) and concluded that the brain is a complex object.

  2. BailOut MoreBanks Tuesday, May 14, 2013

    ” (VEPS) clinical coil, is meant to function as a substitute to full CT scans in parts of the world where those aren’t available” (such as the USA)? Where 50 million don’t have health insurance? And those who do, pay between $300-$9000 for a CT scan?

  3. TechVilli.com Wednesday, May 15, 2013

    This electromagnetic diagnostic tool is great to detect brain injuries like tumors which if detected earlier can safe your life. Due to inflation rise and people confronted in several problems and tensions in life. This tool can save money by detecting it before time which is a unique offering for its users even if you have a bleeding this tool can effectively detect for you.

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