A handheld device intended to aid in the detection of life-threatening bleeding in the skull has been approved by the FDA. The device, called the Infrascanner Model 1000, can help health care providers identify patients with critical head injuries who need an immediate brain imaging study. Made by InfraScan Inc. of Philadelphia, it uses a near-IR scanner, which can nondestructively penetrate the skull through tissue and bone. Blood from intracranial hematomas absorbs the light differently than other areas of the brain. The scanner detects variations in light absorption and transmits the information wirelessly to a display on a handheld computer.