Many of my patients know that my autistic teenage son,Reece, has temporal lobe epilepsy. His seizures recently became more frequent and severe when he entered puberty. Despite seeing a pediatric neurologist at Memorial Hermann Children's Hospital with expertise in autistic patients his seizures still occur frequently. He has nearly constant subclinical seizures that affect his behavior and ability to learn and remember information. He also has a grand mal seizure every 4-6 weeks. Seizures are more than just frightening, they are life threatening. I moved my clinic closer to our home this December because I do not want to be far away in case something happens at school or home. We do our best to have someone with Reece but there are times when he is home alone, his bus brings him home before my other children get home from school. I live with the constant fear that he will have a seizure when no one is there to help him. I have searched for a device that can monitor his physiologic data to warn of an impending seizure. Finally... a watch is available that does just that I wanted to share this with my patients. I will be ordering one of these watches for Reece as soon as I'm finished posting this to my blog.
Below is an excerpt from a website with information about the EMBRACE watch. You may copy and paste this link to go to the site.
"In 2007, Prof. Picard's team at the MIT Media Lab developed a wearable that measured changes on the surface of the skin communicating the main component of stress. For the first time in daily life, you could easily see when stress started to grow, even before you might notice it.
While trying to help people with autism to be better understood, Picard found an unusually huge response from one participant. It turned out to be a seizure! This led to new investigations with Boston Children's hospital in Boston. With data from over 90 patients, the team learned they had built a more accurate method for seizure detection. Their research became published in top peer-reviewed medical and engineering journals, patents were issued, and a version of their sensor is now in use in hundreds of top labs, universities, and hospitals.
While research continues for epilepsy and other medical conditions, many families have asked us for a personal version of the device to give alerts when a seizure might be happening. Experts tell us that these alerts could save lives. Also, many friends keep asking us for a low-cost version “to see when stress is escalating” in themselves or a spouse or child. Our wearable can help with all of these needs!
At Empatica, we marry the best science with the best of design and customer experience. We're proud to finally be launching Embrace, addressing the needs of all – whether you live with stress, seizures, or simply want a gorgeous way to tell the time!"
If you are interested in purchasing or donating a watch, click the image to to the left to be redirected to their website.