2016 has seen at least two combat athletes die as a result of head injuries: Joao Carvalho in MMA and Mike Towell in boxing.
Brain bleeds are so dangerous and the amount of time it takes to detect them is crucial. You can have a bleed but experience a lucid interval (where they feel fine for a prolonged period of time). By the time the blled is detcted it may be too late to perform life-saving surgery and its almost certain there is brain damage.
“The Infrascanner is a handheld device which can be used to detect bleeding on the brain in just two minutes. The makers of the device argue that the machine could be used to detect the injury before obvious symptoms of a brain bleed emerge, giving medical professionals ample time to transport the sufferer to hospital for intracranial surgery.”
The awesome news is that an Infrascanner will also be available at Dublin’s 3Arena, for the Bellator 169.
“We have engaged with the supplier of this device and arranged for a trained provider to attend 3Arena to conduct scans of all competitors post-fight,” said Code Blue in a statement provided by Safe MMA, a not-for-profit fighter safety advocacy group.
“The Infrascanner will not replace mandatory CT scans of KOed fighters, but will act as a ‘Catch All’ facility for fighters who don’t automatically fit the IMMAA criteria for scanning,” said Safe MMA in a statement.
In addition to every fighter receiving an on-site brain scan after their fight, fighters will also receive CT scans at a hospital if they meet any of the following criteria:
- Fighter is KO’d.
- Fighter receives large amount of head shots.
- Cage side doctor believes CT scan is required.
- Fighter clears post fight check but internal bleed is discovered by the Infrascanner
It was in Dublin this April that Joao Carvalho suffered an epidural hematoma; a bleed between the skull and the outermost layer of the brain. Carvalho likely received the injury during his bout with Charlie Ward, a fight he lost via TKO (punches).
After the referee called an end to the contest Carvalho exited the cage under his own strength, despite having a brain hemorrhage. According to his teammates Carvalho’s lucid interval lasted approximately 20 minutes before he began feeling unwell.
After Carvalho, and those around him, had realized he was injured he was rushed to Dublin’s Beaumont Hospital, where surgery was performed. Sadly, it was too late and 48 hours later Carvalho passed away as a result of his injury.
This technology is awesome and we couldn’t be happier to see it being used.
Tune in to BELLATOR 169 tonight!