The London Air Ambulance is trialling a new handheld device which aims to detect head and brain injuries before a patient arrives at hospital.

The infrascanner is a revolutionary device designed to scan a person’s brain and detect any blood clots before a person arrives at hospital. It allows medics to identify and diagnose potentially life-threatening head injuries earlier and more accurately, helping to minimise neuronal loss and means that medics can make potentially life-saving decisions about a patient’s treatment while on the way to hospital.

The device had a 90% accuracy rate when used in hospitals and it is hoped that this will be matched when trialled in a pre-hospital environment.

The London Air Ambulance deals with more than 1,800 serious injuries a year, many of which are victims of road accidents and falls, both frequent causes of brain injuries.

Melanie Williams, a senior serious injury solicitor based in Thompsons Solicitors’ London office, said: “Even a minor head injury can cause lasting damage to a patient, seriously affecting their work and family life. Therefore, any new method that can help diagnose and treat head trauma quicker is a positive step forward.

“Although it’s only in a testing stage, the infrascanner has produced encouraging results and, if the trial is successful, rolling this out UK wide to enable people that have suffered serious brain injuries to get treatment more quickly and accurately should be a priority.”