War often moves medical practices and innovation forward or refocuses research into specific conditions. The knowledge gained by VA medical staff in treatment of traumatic brain injury extends far beyond the care of Veterans of OEF/OIF/OND. While combat injuries to our Servicemembers and injures to professional athletes gain media attention, TBI is most often caused by falls, vehicle accidents and violence. TBI is a major cause of death and disability worldwide, especially in children and young adults.
Sharing the knowledge gained in treatment of mild to moderate concussion VA’s Polytrauma/TBI System of Care has developed “Concussion Coach,” a mobile application that provides portable tools to assess symptoms and to facilitate use of coping strategies. This mobile app is available to Veterans and the general public and is intended to support treatment with a healthcare professional by providing portable, convenient tools for the user to assess symptoms and cope with concussion-related problems. While the app is a useful tool, it is NOT intended to replace professional diagnosis, medical treatment or rehabilitation therapies for those who need them.
Concussion Coach was collaboratively developed by VA’s Rehabilitation and Prosthetic Services and the National Center for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, and the Department of Defense National Center for Telehealth and Technology.
Concussion Coach is available for mobile Apple devices (iPhone, iPad, and IPod Touch) from the App Store:, and will be available on Google Play later in 2014.
Randy McCracken is a U.S. Army Veteran, former medic, computer specialist, and now a Communications Specialist for the VA’s Rehabilitation and Prosthetics Service in Washington, DC.