Epilepsy, a chronic neurological disease affecting 50 million people worldwide and one that deeply shapes the day to day lives of those who suffer it.
The word Epilepsy comes from ancient Greece and it translates as “to be seized by surprise”. And it is exactly this element of “surprise” which greatly disrupts the lives of people living with epilepsy. This is specially true for those who do not respond to existing treatments to control seizures, which is an estimated 30% of epilepsy patients. For these patients, simple daily activities can become deadly as they do not know when an epileptic seizure will struck. So we are left with millions of people of all ages and incomes who see their lives completely limited by this growing disease. Up until now, there has been no way of predicting epileptic seizures, leaving patients at the mercy of the disease. But things are about to change.
MJN Neuroserveis is one of the winners of the second societal challenge of d-LAB Transforming the use and governance of personal health data.
MJN Neuroservies (Catalonia, Spain) has developed a solution to assesses the seizure risk thanks to a simple portable medical device – SERAS – that alarms patients before they have an epileptic seizure and stores data on their condition.
The device that may change the face of epilepsy is a discreet, non-invasive and portable earpiece that is connected to a mobile App. The earpiece monitors and records the patient’s brain activity while the App takes the information sent by the earpiece. When the App notices a potential seizure, one minute before the seizure actually begins, it sends an alarm to the owner of the device. The person can then get to safety position, preventing accidents and injuries. What is more, the App records and stores the data in a Cloud system, and this data offers benefits on an individual and social level. First, doctors have more accurate information on the individual patient which can then be used for their diagnostic and treatment. Secondly, SERAS provides invaluable data to the research community to better understand this condition.
The team behind MJN worked closely with d-LAB to design a pilot project that would test and show the benefits of SERAS. For this particular project, they have teamed up with Clinica Corachan, MatSalud and University of Girona to make the pilot a reality.
The objective of the pilot is to demonstrate the ability of SERAS to record epilepsy seizures and to assess its accuracy to predict the risk of a seizure with a warning of few minutes before the seizure.
The objective of the pilot was to demonstrate the ability of SERAS to record epilepsy seizures and to assess its accuracy to predict the risk of a seizure with a warning of few minutes before the seizure. The pilot aime at validating the quality of the data collected by the device and the timing of the alerts.
The pilot consisted of a clinical trial with 25 patients that spent a minimum of 5 days each at the Clinica Corachan. Currently, it is still ongoing and it tackles patients who have pharma-resistance epilepsy.
Thanks to the positive initial results, the product will be launched commercially in October 2018.
In addition, Clínica Corachán has decided to open an investigation centre fully dedicated to the treatment of epilepsy.
MJN’s solution is a great advancement in epilepsy seizure prediction and it can help to change the lives of millions of people that now are suffering this disease, improving their quality of life and allowing them to be more independent. It is estimated that the development and deployment of the SERAS device could benefit almost 3.5 million people in Europe alone. This figure reaches 6 million patients if it is scaled worldwide. And 20 million if everyone suffering from epilepsy is included.
Numbers speak for themselves.