Singularity University’s FutureMed program is running this week. We’ll soon be covering segments of the event in more depth, but yesterday we peeked into their demo room to see what sort of medical technology advances they are showcasing. Here is a sampling of what we found:
EyeNETRA grew out of a research effort at MIT’s Media Lab. They’ve developed a hardware sleeve that sits on top of a mobile phone, which, when paired with its corresponding software, enables the accurate diagnosis of refractive errors. Or said more simply, their system can check your eyes to see what prescription glasses you need.
Current vision diagnostics are bulky, expensive, and difficult to use. The folks at EyeNETRA are trying to remedy this by creating and selling their low cost, portable solution. Naturally, they see a strong use case for their system in the developing world, where millions of people don’t have access to simple vision correction. They are calling their first product NETRA-G, and it measures nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism, all on a mobile phone.
Lark fits into the category of accelerometer-based sleep monitors of the Zeo and WakeMate variety, but with one twist — in addition to monitoring your sleep activity, the Lark wristband wakes you up as well. In addition to allowing for spouses or significant others to not be interrupted by each other’s differing sleep schedules, according to the representative at the event, their product is popular with the deaf community.
Tibion makes a bionic leg that is used in stroke gait recovery. The device helps improve post-stroke physical therapy and is worn over the course of weeks or months as a patient recovers. The programmed motions and support of the device allow patients to more actively and precisely engage in exercises such as stair-climbing, thus improving recovery outcomes. This is the first device of its kind and it’s currently selling to rehabilitation hospitals and skilled nursing facilities.
Sotera Wireless sees a future in which the vital signs of every patient in a hospital are continuously monitored through lightweight and unobtrusive technology that can be worn on the body – with data transmitted wirelessly of course. This would allow medical staff to know the vital signs of their patients while in transport or walking and would provide a better experience for the patient, with fewer cables and bedside monitors. Most notably, Sotera claims that their technology can measure the blood pressure of ambulatory patients without the need for a cuff. Clinical studies for this system are currently underway.