Smart glasses evaluate concussion symptoms through balance

"Smart glasses" could be a feasible tool in detecting concussions and improving critical decision making, according to a study published in JMIR mHealth and uHealth.

Current concussion assessments rely heavily on subjective methods like self-reporting, but head-mounted wearables like smartglasses could provide information leading to improved concussion detection. In this study, researchers compared standing balance assessments using smart glasses with an internal accelerometer to a waist-based balance accelerometer measure (BAM).

“This approach could lead to a wearable platform for real-time assessment of concussion-related impairments that could be further augmented with telemedicine capabilities to integrate professional clinical guidance,” wrote first author Joseph Salisbury, PhD, and colleagues. “Smart glasses may be superior to fully immersive virtual reality headsets for this application, given their lighter weight and reduced likelihood of potential safety concerns.”

Some 42 healthy individuals were enrolled in the study and completed two trials of six balance stances following BAM protocol while data form the accelerometer was collated with the smart glasses. Results showed balance measurements collected with the head-worn smart glasses were correlated with data collected by the waist-mounted accelerometer.

“Balance measurements derived from the smartglasses-based accelerometer were consistent with those obtained using a waist-mounted accelerometer. Additional research is necessary to determine to what extent smartglasses-based accelerometry measures can detect balance dysfunction associated with concussion,” concluded Salisbury and colleagues. “However, given the potential for smartglasses to perform additional concussion-related assessments in an integrated, wearable platform, continued development and validation of a smartglasses-based balance assessment is warranted.”