The Technology How does the HCS work?
Halifax Consciousness Scanner (HCS) Solution and Technology
Mindful Scientific has developed a proprietary solution and technology platform, the Halifax Consciousness Scanner, to objectively assess a person’s level of conscious awareness that will solve significant issues in the diagnosis and management of concussion and other neurocognitive problems including major brain injury. The HCS comprises a customized headset embedded with specialized electroencephalography (EEG) technology, a proprietary event-related potential (ERP) stimulus delivery system and custom built data capture and analysis engines.
Event related Potentials (ERPs)
The HCS uses EEG technology to measure electrical activity in the brain. Analyses of EEG signals involves extracting event related potentials, which provide an on-line measure of the brain’s response to a stimulus. Upon activation, the HCS collects ERP data and the analysis engine converts the recorded data into numerical scores of conscious awareness based on five indicators of neural processing – sensation, perception, attention, memory and language.
Electroencephalography (EEG) Technologies
The barriers to collecting EEG signals have recently been greatly reduced, but detailed analysis of those signals is a highly sophisticated process. Measures derived from event-related potentials (ERPs) are minute deflections normally buried in the continuous EEG that have been tightly linked to stages of processing in the central nervous system. ERPs directly measure the electrical currents produced by neural activity and track neural activity in real time, on the order of milliseconds, therefore providing an on-line record of conscious processing.
Other Neuroimaging Technologies
In recent years, there has been increasing interest in the application of functional neuroimaging methods in the assessment of consciousness. Functional neuroimaging methods such as high-density magnetoencephalography (MEG), positron emission tomography (PET), and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) provide images of neural activation with good spatial accuracy. Overall, these methods provide a promising means to assess conscious awareness in behaviourally unresponsive patients. Mindful Scientific is currently exploring opportunities to extend the HCS to other neuroimaging technologies for inpatient diagnostics.