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Seizure Detecting Devices

Seizure Detecting Devices

Seizures can happen anytime and anywhere. This can result in anxiety and fear for individuals with epilepsy and their caregivers.

Often a big concern from caregivers of people with epilepsy is not knowing when a seizure is happening.

To assist in potentially detecting when a seizure is occurring, there are several electronic devices that have been developed to help detect activity or behaviours often associated with seizures.

Below is an overview of some devices that may be useful in detecting movements that could resemble a tonic-clonic (grand mal) seizure. These are the SmartWatch™, SAMi™ and the Emfit Movement Monitor.

We encourage and strongly recommend communication with the manufacturers of these products as well as consultation with doctors about these devices to determine the possible efficacy of such devices for your situation.

Note: the BC Epilepsy Society is not a manufacturer, distributor, seller, representative, or broker of the products contained in this blog post. This article is meant to give cursory and introductory information about the potential of these devices. We do not accept responsibility for the consequences of the use of these devices.


1. The SmartWatch™

What is the SmartWatch™?

The SmartWatch is a motion detecting and alerting wristwatch. It continuously monitors movements and instantly alerts designated contacts by text and phone call alerts when repetitive, irregular shaking motion is detected. It also records the time, duration and location of these movement patterns. Users and caregivers can securely access and download activity reports.

An example of the watch

 

An example of the phone inferface app

 

How does SmartWatch work?

The SmartWatch uses patented miniaturized technology and sophisticated algorithms, to analyze activity outside what it considers “a normal spectrum”.

SmartWatch works in conjunction with an Android phone. SmartWatch users need to have an Android phone with a data plan within a 15 foot range. When the SmartWatch detects excessive and repetitive movement, it wirelessly signals the user’s Android phone that then sends a text and phone call alert to designated contacts.

What if I don’t shake during a seizure?

People who do not have repetitive, irregular shaking motions in conjunction with seizures can still benefit from some SmartWatch features. The watch has a Help button that when pressed immediately sends an alert to designated contacts. Users can also schedule customized medication reminder alerts.

How reliable is it?

This device has been evaluated in clinical studies conducted at several leading medical institutions, including Stanford and University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). These studies have validated the ability of the SmartWatch to detect and alert upon repetitive shaking motion similar to those caused by convulsive seizures in both adults and children.

How much does it cost?

There is no charge for the watch. The company only charges for the activation fee and the subscription fees. If a person cancels service within the first year the watch must be returned to the company. 

There are two subscription options available. These are listed below:

1. The SmartWatch Silver
The activation fee for this plan is $149.00 USD
The monthly subscription fee for this plan is $19.99 USD

The Silver plan includes:
- Alert of one contact upon repetitive shaking motion
- Auto speakerphone and audio recording activation upon alert
- Cloud access to monitoring data with reporting
- Event diary and log
- Low battery alerts
- A lifetime product warranty

2. The SmartWatch Gold
The activation fee for this plan is $199.00 USD
The monthly subscription fee for this plan is $29.99 USD

The Gold plan includes all of the features of the Silver plan, along with the additional features:
- Alert of multiple contacts upon repetitive shaking motion
- GPS location of the SmartWatch is included with alerts
- A Snooze option so the user can temporally “pause” the watch if they know they are going to be participating in activities that may inadvertently trigger an alert 
- Medication reminders can be sent to the SmartWatch

Where can I get this device?

This device can be purchased online at www.smart-monitor.com 

 


 

 2. The Smart Activity Monitor for Individuals (SAMi™)

What is SAMi™?

SAMi (Smart Activity Monitor for individuals) is a sleep activity monitoring system that records video and audio of a sleeping person. This system also analyzes the video for physical activity that typically occurs during a tonic-clonic (grand mal) seizure. When abnormal motion is detected, it sends an alarm to an iPhone or iPod Touch via a wireless network.

The components of the SAMi monitoring system


What type of equipment does it use?

The SAMi sleep activity monitor consists of a wireless video camera with infrared LED illuminators and an application (app) that runs on an iPhone or iPod Touch. SAMi is available with or without a dedicated Wi-Fi router.

How does it work?

The SAMi app is a customizable program that searches and analyzes live video information for “qualified” events. If an event occurs that meets their detecting parameters, an alarm sounds on an iPhone or iPod Touch and live video and audio is displayed.

The SAMi app uses sophisticated motion sensing techniques. It uses temporal and spatial filtering to increase sensitivity and reduce false alarms for non-seizure events – this includes typical tossing and turning during sleep.

The recordings and times of the events are stored on the device for review. This information can be downloaded on a computer.

Can it detect seizures that do not involve shaking?

The SAMi device is not designed to detect seizures that do not involve typical movements that occur during a tonic-clonic (grand mal) seizure.

How much does it cost?

There are currently three purchasing options available.

1. The SAMi Camera: $399 USD
This purchasing option only includes the video camera.

2. The Standard SAMi Kit: $899.00 USD
This contains the video camera, wireless router and a pre-configured 5th generation iPod with a 4" screen and 16 GB storage.

3. JB Edition SAMi Kit: $949.00 USD
This includes the video camera, wireless router and a pre-configured 5th generation iPod with a 4" screen and 32 GB storage.

This device can be shipped worldwide. Prices do not include shipping, tax, or customs fees or tariffs.

Where can I get this device?

This device can be purchased online at www.samialert.com


3. The Emfit Movement Monitor

What is the Emfit Movement Monitor?

The Emfit Movement Monitor monitors and detects abnormal movements (such as muscle spasms) during sleep.

What type of equipment does it use?

The Emfit Movement Monitor consists of two main components; a flexible and durable bed sensor which is placed under the mattress, and the control unit that contains the monitor. It uses two standard AA size 1.5 V batteries.

An example of the Emfit Movement Monitor


How does it work?

The Movement Monitor detects when a person has continuous quick-paced movements over a preset period of time. When these are detected, it triggers a high-frequency alarm.

This device has sophisticated, customized software that is built into the control unit. The sensor is made of Emfit’s special proprietary and patented electro-active polymer and it produces small electric signals from any movement.

The Movement Monitor includes an optional no-movement alarm. An alarm will sound within five seconds of no longer detecting movements, such as the individual’s heartbeat and respiration (for example, when the person exits the bed).

The Movement Monitor is designed to work with all types of mattresses, including foam, memory-shape, spring, and extra-thick varieties. There is a sensitivity adjustment inside of the control unit to make changes if necessary.

Can it detect seizures that do not involve shaking?

The Emfit Movement Monitor is not designed to detect seizures that do not involve typical movements that occur during a tonic-clonic (grand mal) seizure.

How much does it cost?

The Emfit Movement Monitor is $600.00 USD. An optional wireless plug-in Remote Alarm, that will sound up to 500 feet from the main control unit is available for $40.00 USD. Prices do not include shipping, tax, or customs fees or tariffs. This device can only be shipped to Canada or the United States.

This device can be purchased online at www.emfitcorp.com

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