Mil Med. 2023 Nov 8;188(Supplement_6):67-74. doi: 10.1093/milmed/usad027.
INTRODUCTION: Mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) is prevalent in service members (SMs); however, there is a lack of consensus on the appropriate approach to return to duty (RTD). Head-mounted augmented reality technology, such as the HoloLens 2, can create immersive, salient environments to more effectively evaluate relevant military task performance. The Troop Readiness Evaluation with Augmented Reality Return-to-Duty (READY) platform was developed to objectively quantify cognitive and motor performance during military-specific activities to create a comprehensive approach to aid in mTBI detection and facilitate appropriate RTD. The aim of this project was to detail the technical development of the Troop READY platform, the outcomes, and its potential role in the aiding detection and RTD decision-making post mTBI. The secondary aim included evaluating the safety, feasibility, and SM usability of the Troop READY platform.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The Troop READY platform comprises three assessment modules of progressing complexity: (1) Static and Dynamic Mobility, (2) Rifle Qualification Test, and (3) Small Unit Operations Capacity-Room Breach/Clearing Exercise. The modules were completed by 137 active duty SMs. Safety was assessed through monitoring of adverse events. Feasibility was assessed using the self-directed module completion rate. Usability was measured using the Systems Usability Scale.
RESULTS: No adverse events occurred. Completion rates of the three modules ranged from 98 to 100%. In terms of usability, the mean Systems Usability Scale score of all participants was 83.92 (13.95), placing the Troop READY platform in the good-to-excellent category. Objective motor and cognitive outcomes were generated for each module.
CONCLUSION: The Troop READY platform delivers self-directed, salient assessment modules to quantify single-task, dual-task, and unit-based performance in SMs. The resultant data provide insight into SM performance through objective outcomes and identify specific areas of executive or motor function that may be slow to recover following mTBI.