Health IT

Constant Therapy rolls out mobile, personalized brain rehabilitation via the iPad

After a stroke or traumatic brain injury, many people experience difficulty speaking or understanding what others are saying. The good news is that the brain is able to repair itself to some extent, with the help of cognitive and speech therapy programs. The bad news is, the rehabilitation process is expensive and can involve weekly […]

After a stroke or traumatic brain injury, many people experience difficulty speaking or understanding what others are saying. The good news is that the brain is able to repair itself to some extent, with the help of cognitive and speech therapy programs. The bad news is, the rehabilitation process is expensive and can involve weekly visits to specialty clinics.

A startup called Constant Therapy converted years’ worth of aphasia rehabilitation research at Boston University into a digitized cognitive-communication therapy program that patients can use on iPads from their homes.

Now the Boston-based company has just scored its first round of outside capital from Boston University, TiE Angels Boston and serial entrepreneur Andy Palmer to continue developing and marketing the platform. Constant Therapy didn’t disclose how much was raised, but a recent SEC filing indicates it was $605,000.

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Designed for people who have had a traumatic brain injury or stroke, or who have a learning disability, the app allows speech and language pathologists to create, modify and monitor customized therapy programs that patients can access remotely. The cloud-based solution encompasses more than 50 different tasks and 10 levels of difficulty from which therapists can select when building the programs. As patients progress, the program can then be modified accordingly.

A number of communication apps, both free and paid, have been developed with stroke and TBI patients in mind. Constant Therapy’s is based on research conducted by Swathi Kiran at the Aphasia Research Laboratory at Boston University and is being tested in 50 patients there. So far, patients have demonstrated “remarkable positive treatment outcomes,” Kiran wrote in a January article for the news magazine ADVANCE Speech & Hearing. CEO and co-founder Veera Anantha said that study is on track to wrap up by the middle of this year.

I first wrote about Constant Therapy last May, when I met Anantha on a trip to Boston. In the funding announcement today, he said adoption of the app has been growing 50 percent month-over-month, with thousands of people now using it. A free trial is available for download in the App Store.