Concussion clinic receives research funding from The Annie Banannie Foundation

March 19, 2024
Annie Banannie Foundation members presenting check to concussion clinic staff.

By Marianna McGaha

The MUSC Children's Health Concussion Clinic recently received a $25,000 donation from The Annie Banannie Foundation. The money will support research that will help children with traumatic brain injuries.

Annie Nichols is the inspiration behind The Annie Banannie Foundation. In 2017, a then 4-year-old Annie slipped and fell in her family's garage in Murrells Inlet, South Carolina. She was rushed by helicopter to MUSC Children's Hospital in Charleston. Within minutes of landing, the MUSC team performed a life-saving craniotomy.

Annie's mom, Kelsey, credits the expertise of MUSC's doctors with saving Annie's life. They started The Annie Banannie Foundation and held their first fundraiser within weeks of leaving the hospital.

The foundation's most recent donation will help fund research at the MUSC Children's Health Concussion Clinic. The clinic is offered twice a week at the after-hours location in Mount Pleasant. The clinic's new director, Stacey Grey, DPT, PCS, CBIS, has a special interest in two research areas.

First, she's interested in finding more options for assessing children who are under 3-and-a-half-years-old for brain injuries. She's also interested in working with BlinkTBI, which was developed in part by MUSC. "This tool assesses the rate of blinks per minute, which is typically altered after a concussion," Grey said. "We plan to meet to determine the possibility of coordinating research and applicability within the pediatric concussion clinic."