Looking for Consciousness: A Novel Functional Neuroimaging Approach for Detection of Visual Cognition in Patients with Severe TBI and Disorders of Consciousness

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Researchers at Spaulding, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Massachusetts General Hospital have developed a new brain scanning procedure designed to detect consciousness in people who have difficulty following commands and communicating. These new fMRI techniques will be assessed and compared to the currently used bedside tests in order to determine the best method of diagnosis and predictors of outcome. The family's input regarding the patient's condition will also be assessed. This multi-modal approach may hopefully reduce the number of misdiagnoses in the future for this sensitive patient population.