Diagnosing Concussions By Holding Sway

Diagnosing Concussions By Holding Sway

If a medical condition is causing you to sway back and forth instead of standing up straight, Sway Medical wants to be right there to warn you or your doctor that something isn’t right.

Virtually unknown outside of its home turf in Tulsa, Okla. until this week, iPhone diagnostic maker Sway has emerged on the stage with a small Series A round and an ambitious plan to deploy its technology to various industries, including big pharma and possibly even law enforcement.

“This can definitely go in a lot of different directions,” Chief Executive Chase Curtiss said. “The key is going to be business partners” to help with deployment.

Sway has created algorithms that enable the sensors inside the iPhone to gauge a person’s sense of balance. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the technology for use in diagnosing concussion, a hot area as more medical professionals and regulators eye professional athletes whose health might be compromised from years of contact sports.

The company could also find itself on the threshold of another hot area: the “outcome-based medicine” initiative that is one of the central tenets of federal health-care reform. Under the provision, various health-care professionals will see their reimbursement from the government more closely tied to patient outcomes than the volume of patients treated.

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