Head injury serum markers for assessing response to trauma: Design of the HeadSMART study

Matthew E. Peters, Vani Rao, Kathleen T. Bechtold, Durga Roy, Haris I. Sair, Jeannie Marie Leoutsakos, Ramon Diaz-Arrastia, Robert D. Stevens, D. Scott Batty, Hayley Falk, Christopher Fernandez, Uju Ofoche, Alexandra Vassila, Anna J. Hall, Braden Anderson, Edward Bessman, Constantine G. Lyketsos, Allen D. Everett, Jennifer Van Eyk, Frederick K. Korley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Background: Accurate diagnosis and risk stratification of traumatic brain injury (TBI) at time of presentation remains a clinical challenge. The Head Injury Serum Markers for Assessing Response to Trauma study (HeadSMART) aims to examine blood-based biomarkers for diagnosing and determining prognosis in TBI. Methods: HeadSMART is a 6-month prospective cohort study comparing emergency department patients evaluated for TBI (exposure group) to (1) emergency department patients evaluated for traumatic injury without head trauma and (2) healthy persons. Study methods and characteristics of the first 300 exposure participants are discussed. Results: Of the first 300 participants in the exposure arm, 70% met the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine criteria for TBI, with the majority (80.1%) classified as mild TBI. The majority of subjects in the exposure arm had Glasgow Coma Scale scores of 13–15 (98.0%), normal head computed tomography (81.3%) and no prior history of concussion (71.7%). Conclusion: With systematic phenotyping, HeadSMART will facilitate diagnosis and risk-stratification of the heterogeneous group of individuals currently diagnosed with TBI.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)370-378
Number of pages9
JournalBrain Injury
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 23 2017


  • TBI
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • biomarkers
  • blunt head trauma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience (miscellaneous)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Neurology


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