Posted On: February 21, 2012 by Stephen Bilkis

There is a need for a quantitative measure when it comes to head impacts

There is a need for a quantitative measure when it comes to head impacts, many studies have noted. This is important to medical experts, as well as those who seek to prevent head damage, like motorcycle helmet manufacturers, or car manufacturers. If these qualities and factors are not tested, there is no way to know, short of letting accidents happen, the best way to offer protection so brain injury does not occur at all.

The acceleration of the head is the primary factor most consider when it comes to the tolerance of the head to impact, doctors and hospitals have discovered. The duration of impact is also important to determine the severity of head injury. One among several measures used to quantify head impact is the Head Injury Criterion, or HIC. This is the most widely used method. While this method has its detractors, there are reasons why it is still used so widely, when it comes to the tolerance of the brain to blunt impact to the head.

The beginning of the method began in the 1940s and continued through the 1960s, using cadaver heads. The cadavers were subjected to blows to the forehead and results were compared and mathematically plotted. In time, car companies began to suggest and aid further avenues of research, and American football players were also included in such studies. The results helped to show how unlikely brain injury was without direct contact to the head, and were the basic building blocks for the HIC, which doctors and hospitals in The Bronx and Brooklyn use to this day.