Tallinn University of Technology

The scientists of Tallinn University of Technology have worked on a research project for two years to develop a portable device for detection of traumatic brain injury. It is a portable device, which could be used in ambulances for early detection and treatment of traumatic brain injury to prevent subsequent serious health problems.

According to Henrik Herranen, a research scientist of TTU Faculty of Mechanical Engineering who participated in the project, the objective of the project is to develop a portable medical device, i.e. a helmet, for objective and reliable emergency diagnosis and personalized treatment of traumatic brain injury in order to reduce health problems caused by serious injuries.

For this the device uses qEEG and HD-TES technology:

  • qEEG, i.e. quantitative electroencephalography is a technology for measuring electrical activity of the brain by monitoring alpha, beta, delta and theta waves via electrodes attached to the scalp. qEEG can be used to detect various health disorders, including e.g. traumatic brain injury (concussion);
  • HD TES (high-definition transcranial electric stimulation) is a technology for electrical stimulation of brain (i.e. low current is delivered to different areas of the brain within a few minutes). As a result, neuronal excitability increases, or vice versa, decreases in the affected area. The method is useful in the treatment of various health problems.

Henrik Herranen says: "As a result of this project a demonstrator prototype has been developed that allows qEEG measurement to be carried out. In addition to measurement, the prototype allows monitoring of the process via telemedicine. The result is an automatic helmet that positions electrodes on the patient's scalp and ensures that the patient's EEG signals are measured via telemedicine.”

It is proposed that the prototype allows automatic qEEG measurement, which could be used more widely in the detection and measuring of traumatic brain injury. "The prototype is a test platform which will be developed further into a prototype of the next generation and towards mass production," Herranen adds.

TTU scientists carried out the research project in cooperation with medical institutions in Norway, Germany and Great Britain and with Cardiff University.

Kersti Vähi, Research Administration Office