Diabetes mellitus Type 1 is a medical condition that occurs when a person is unable to produce insulin to control their blood glucose levels. Where exogenous insulin is needed to maintain stable blood glucose levels, hyperglycaemia and hypoglycaemia are common states. If left untreated, the condition can lead to blindness, limb amputation, stroke, unconsciousness or seizure. In some instances, death can occur.
The standard approach for monitoring blood glucose levels presently involves direct analysis of blood, which is generally obtained by patients pricking their fingers; an intrusive and inconvenient approach that is required up to 10 times a day.
The necessity for patients to continually prick their fingers to maintain their health is one of the most challenging aspects of being diabetic.
Firefly is an innovative, wrist-worn device which allows type 1 diabetics to non-invasively monitor for the potentially life threatening effects of low blood sugar.
Firefly utilises a breakthrough, patented method for indicating the onset of hypoglycaemia, developed and trialled at the Royal Adelaide Hospital. By monitoring physiological tremors and symptoms specific to low blood glucose levels, Firefly can detect the early indicators of hypoglycaemia and alert the patient, allowing them to take preventative measures. Firefly will also have the capacity to alert the parent or carer, which is especially crucial in managing potentially fatal nocturnal hypoglycaemic events.
The utility of this non-invasive, personal hypoglycaemic monitor has been demonstrated in preliminary clinical trials. Grey Innovation has provided support to Firefly Health in the development of a sophisticated validation system and further clinical trials are currently underway.