Concussion prevention: Can woodpecker-inspired collar reduce brain injuries in athletes, service members?
What started 10 years ago with an offhand comment about the head-banging woodpecker has become a simple-looking device that just might prevent the types of brain injuries that have parents wondering if they should pull their children from the athletic field.
Seth GaleWyrick draws connections between a number of modern product designs and their biological inspirations.
The most promising research into concussion prevention is inspired by human yawns, woodpecker tongues and mountain-dwelling rams. The manifestation of this work is the novel Q-Collar, a device worn around the neck that works by enhancing the brain’s own physiology by lightly compressing the jugular to increase blood volume in the skull.
Dr. David Smith always will remember Kuechly for something most don’t see, a thin collar that wraps around the neck and applies pressure on the jugular vein to increase blood volume in the skull to create an air-bag effect.
Sports equipment maker Bauer unveiled a collar-like device Wednesday that it says can protect against microscopic brain damage in athletes playing contact sports like hockey, football and soccer.
You’ll have to squint to see it. Kuechly has worn the thin band that circles around the back of his neck, with two open ends that press slightly against either side of his jugular vein, throughout the preseason to little notice.
You wouldn’t let your child drink a glass of cognac or smoke a cigarette, so why would you send him out on a football field to risk brain damage? It’s a question Dr. Bennet Omalu — a forensic pathologist whose discovery of chronic traumatic encephalopathy was portrayed in the Will Smith film “Concussion” — wants parents to consider. He warns that children who play football, hockey and lacrosse could face a lifetime of health consequences and details his findings in his new book, “Truth Doesn’t Have a Side: My Alarming Discovery about the Danger of Contact Sports.”
While some companies focus on collision-absorbent helmets, Q30 aims to protect the brain from inside the skull.
The Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) has announced 77 finalists for its 2017 International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA), and the Q-Collar made the list.
Promising results were published last month in the Journal of Neurotrauma, regarding a local concussion study performed by Cincinnati Children’s which has followed high school football players from Archbishop Moeller and St. Xavier in testing the effectiveness of a device known as the “Q-Collar” on the front lines of the battle against brain trauma.