Traditional electroencephalography (EEG) is time-consuming to set up, must be administered by qualified technologists and relies on reusable electrodes which can leave patients vulnerable to infection. Massachusetts-based HydroDot is aiming to solve these issues and significantly improve the clinical process with StatNet – a flexible, single-use EEG headpiece that offers a simpler, safer, faster and more accurate way to measure electrical activity in the human brain.

EEG has many uses including testing for epilepsy, stroke, and brain injury, and monitoring brain function in intensive care units, emergency rooms and sleep studies.

We are used to seeing EEG performed with an array of electrodes attached to the patient's head, but through the use of printed circuit technology, StatNet provides an elegantly simple way to get the same job done. Pre-gelled elongated silver-sliver chloride sensors are integrated into the headpiece with high quality electrical signals transmitted to any standard EEG recording device via a single cable. The simplicity of the design (compared to the 20 or more wires associated with traditional electrodes) also means that StatNet provides a less distressing experience for patients.

Kathleen Principe, President of HydroDot, the developers of StatNet, sees the main application of the StatNet in emergency rooms and intensive care units where many patients have sub-clinical seizures that may be difficult to diagnose and can go undetected, and where rapid diagnosis and treatment can have a significant impact on patient outcome.

"Over 10 million people present at emergency rooms in the U.S. every year and a significant number of them have epileptic seizure, stroke, head trauma or other neurological problems. Because StatNet can be quickly and accurately performed by any healthcare professional, proper treatment can be given more quickly."

StatNet could also be used in emergency field situations, for example by emergency medical technicians at the scene of an accident or by trainers on the athletic field.

The potential uses of EEGs are far broader than current applications, but their uses have been restricted by shortages of qualified technologists to administer them and by lengthy set-up times.

HydroDot says that because the StatNet headpiece is disposable, it offers a safer option than reusable electrodes which have no consistent way of being cleaned.

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