Concussions have been a hot topic in media of late since the release of the Will Smith film, Concussion, which documents the research of Dr Bennet Omalu on Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE). Congress is now set to hold special hearings on the topic bringing together experts in the field from both the civilian and military communities to discuss prevention, assessment and treatment. Most providers use some variation of the Sports Concussion Assessment Tool, SCAT3, for concussion assessment. Developed by leading concussion experts including Dr Kevin Guskiewicz at the University of North Carolina, the SCAT3 is a multi-modal concussion assessment including the Glasgow Coma Scale, patient symptoms, neurocognitive function and patient balance.
Here at iMedicalApps we have reviewed a number of concussion apps including an extensive review of the guidelines and how apps should be developed and we did a review of the best concussion management apps based on the guidelines. Unfortunately, there still is not a SCAT3 app available, leaving the Concussion Assessment and Response Sport Version app the best currently available concussion app. What about after the concussion? How do we assess when athletes can return to play? Our previous favorite was the excellent University of Michigan Return2Play concussion app.
One of the latest entries to the concussion app field is the Symptom Tracking Application for Concusion (S.T.A.C.) app from the Medical College of Wisconsin. The SCAT3 app was developed via a contest between physician-student teams; undergrads from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee worked with physicians and scientists at the Medical College of Wisconsin. We previously reviewed another of their student developed medical apps, Friendly Base Deficit Calculator. Their new S.T.A.C. app attempts to help patient and providers determine when a concussed patient can return to play. This app is based on the symptom list from the SCAT3, the most current concussion guideline.
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Evidence based medicine
The app uses the most current symptom checklist in the SCAT3 concussion guideline. The app includes recommendations based on the SCAT3 for return to play using the 6 stage, 7 day return to play guideline.
What patients/providers would benefit from this App?
Athletes, parents, coaches, trainers and all providers who care for concussed athletes including students, residents, mid-levels, nurses, primary care, ER, neurology, and sports medicine physicians.
Disclaimer: The views expressed are those of the author(s) and do not reflect the official policy of the Department of the Army, the Department of Defense or the U.S. Government.
- Uses information from the most current SCAT3 concussion guideline.
- Permits graphing of patient data over time.
- Includes recommendations for activities at each of the 6 return to play stages.
- No directions on the use of the concussion app.
- Interface can be challenging to navigate.
- Lacks ability to send data reports from the app.
- Lacks reminders, activity lists of other apps.
The S.T.A.C. app is one of the only available that uses the SCAT3 symptom checklist for concussion return to play. However, the SCAT3 app lacks the features and ease of use found in the UM Return2Play app and the comprehensive concussion evaluations and return to play protocol found in the CARE app.
- Overall Score
- User Interface
Interface takes some getting used to and the app includes no directions or information about the authors.
- Multimedia Usage
The app includes a nifty graphing function for patient data over time, but no ability to export the data to providers.
App is free and certainly worth a look for those interested in a return to play app that uses the SCAT3 symptom checklist.
- Real World Applicability
This is an app that I want to use, but dislike using due to the interface. Unfortunately, none of the available concussion apps include the full SCAT3 and a return to play protocol based on the SCAT3 in one user friendly app.
- Device Used For Review
iPhone 6S running iOS 9.2.1
- Available for DownloadAndroidiPhoneiPad