The Government’s test for traumatic brain injury (TBI) has been criticised for its limited scope, low reliability and the possibility of bias.
The National Health Service (NHS) is considering an overhaul of its testing methods and has admitted it is “not yet confident” the test is effective.
It comes after a number of reports on the test in recent weeks suggested the test could not be relied upon.
The test was designed to assess the likelihood of people who have suffered a head injury or stroke getting a diagnosis of CTE.
The test’s authors said they had found no correlation between how often people were diagnosed with the condition and their likelihood of developing the degenerative disease.
The Health Service Executive (HSE) has said the test would be rolled out to all those who require it.
Its chief executive, Peter Ryan, said: “We have the largest testing system in the world, but our results have not been replicated by other organisations.
We are taking a very close look at our testing system to see if we can make it better.”
There are many factors that contribute to the development of CTS.
These include age, sex, body type, previous traumatic brain injuries, whether there are any other medical conditions, and the fact that we don’t know how often it happens.”
Mr Ryan added: “It’s not just a question of how much time you spend in a lab or the number of people in a hospital, but what your mental state and the extent of your impairment.”
The problem is we can’t say that for sure at the moment.”
A recent report from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), published last month, found there was “little evidence” that CTE could be identified by the test, despite the NHS spending more than £1 billion a year on its tests.
The NICE study said the most common symptoms of CTV were memory loss, disorientation and memory loss and the severity of symptoms did not necessarily indicate how serious the illness was.
Dr Andrew Nunn, director of the Institute for Neuropsychopharmacology and Biopharmaceutical Research at the University of Sheffield, said the tests were “not the gold standard” and added: ‘There are a number areas that we need to work on in the future.”
Dr Nunn said there was no way to know whether the test was reliable.
‘A problem with the test’ The head of the NHS, Dr Peter Ryan told the Sunday Times the testing method could be improved.
He said: ‘It is very important that there is an understanding that the test can be a problem with it.’
There are very, very few studies of the accuracy of the test that show it is very accurate, and we need better tests that will be more robust.’
We can’t trust the results’ Dr Ryan added that “the results are not the gold Standard” and the tests lack “a degree of rigour that we would like”. “
If you look at people with this disorder, they often find it very difficult to tell family members what they have experienced.”‘
We can’t trust the results’ Dr Ryan added that “the results are not the gold Standard” and the tests lack “a degree of rigour that we would like”.
He said he was “very concerned” about the “significant limitations” in the test.
NHS figures show that of the 1,100 people diagnosed with CTS last year, around 60% had a positive test result.
‘Unprecedented response’The NHS has said it is working with the Institute of Neuropsychobiology and Biopsychopharmacological Research to test the test’s results for accuracy.
A spokesman said: ”This is a major undertaking and is expected to take longer than originally expected.
“We have identified the main issues with the current testing system, and have been working closely with the NICE group to address those issues.
We have identified additional issues that need to be addressed to make it a better test.”‘
More than 30,000 people’ The spokesman said the results of the new test were “consistent” with the number in the NHS and other medical bodies.
It is hoped the results will be published within a few weeks.
Dr Ryan said the National Health Services (Nhs) is “currently working with a range of organisations to improve our testing process and to increase our confidence in the results”.
He added that he was confident that the NHS could “provide a reliable and accurate test”.
‘No evidence’ for link between CTE and football The Government has said that there was little evidence of a link between football players who have played professionally and the risk of developing CTE, and that the tests “do not provide a complete answer” to whether the condition can be detected.
The Government said that it would “take the opportunity” to review the test as part of the review of its concussion policy.
A Department of Health spokesman