For people who live with epilepsy and those who care for them, the word SUDEP is the one word that can strike fear into them.

Therefore the most natural reaction when this subject is approached is for them to switch off and shut down taking ignorance as bliss, if this is not acknowledged it will never happen to us!

And as tricky as this subject is we know that SUDEP CAN and DOES happen. So arming yourself with facts, knowledge and tools is key.

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This week we are celebrating 25 years since we launched our first version of our Companion product and the start of our journey of product innovation through to our full range of alarms and monitoring solutions that we have today. We are also celebrating the life of our founder David Godfrey who sadly passed away at this time last year.

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PulseGuard is the multi-award-winning seizure monitor that has been taking the world by storm since it launched in 2014.

PulseGuard Awards

Customers all over the world have been touched by the story behind PulseGuard, as well as its innovative design, as it was developed not by a large corporate company, but by a UK family so desperate to find a system to safeguard their son after all other systems on the market failed to detect most of his seizures. They poured their life savings and time into developing PulseGuard and in turn not only helped themselves but help other families globally from constant worries and sleepless nights.

PulseGuard’s cutting-edge technology made it the first system of it’s kind to hit the epilepsy market. measuring heart rate changes in the body using the small lightweight wireless sensor, rather than more traditional movement/ moisture or sound monitors, PulseGuard can detect even the smallest of seizures that create no outward signs of a seizure and may have before been easily missed.

The PulseGuard software continuously references the user’s heart rate and using the parameters uniquely set for each individual user, alerts the carer as soon as the heart rate goes above or below the parameters via the failsafe Alert-iT pager.

One of PulseGuard’s many benefits is the fact that along with seizure detection from when the heart rate increases. It can detect a drop to the heart rate which is the main concern for carers of those who suffer from nocturnal seizures, when the risk of missing a seizure is greater due to carer’s fatigue and sleeping patterns and patients are put at a greater risk of SUDEP.

PulseGuard alert’s the carer as soon as the heart rate starts to drop, so in the case of choking/suffocation/ apnoea/ respiratory arrest or a cardiac event which can lead to a cardiac arrest. The earliest medical intervention can be given to increase the chances of a full recovery.

Unlike Pock-iT (PulseGuard’s little brother) PulseGuard has a range of more professional features such as data recording. This feature creates a record when the heart rate parameters are breached, which can easily be shared via email directly from the PulseGuard tablet with your consultant or epilepsy nurse to help improve drug management and care plans. The data can also be easily downloaded and turned into a graph so that you can store an accurate seizure record for yourself.

With the ongoing support from the epilepsy society who provide the testbed for all PulseGuard products, they also help suggest improvements for new releases.  This has enabled PulseGuard to implement features such as continuous recording. A diagnostic tool to monitor heart rate data before and after seizures to help understand what happens to the heart over a longer period and help improve patient care. As well as lockdown functions which are particularly useful in a care home setting so that no settings can be changed without a password being input.

Now including the Alert-iT Pager, offering upto 450 metre range and failsafe provides not only an alert when PulseGuard is activated but reassurance to the carer that the pager is connected to the PulseGuard and that the PulseGuard is working correctly.

The PulseGuard and Alert-iT partnership allows our product range to constantly evolve, and we strive to set the benchmark for all epilepsy detection and monitoring systems for now and in the future providing a gold standard service in products and support for users, carers and healthcare professionals.

More information on PulseGuard can be found here

Pock-iT is the first exciting epilepsy project to be released from the new partnership between Alert-iT and PulseGuard.

PulseGuard is an established product which is helping safeguard over 700 people globally with its pioneering heart rate technology for epilepsy seizure detection and heart rate monitoring.

Pock-iT is in effect PulseGuard’s little brother, sharing many of the same much-loved features as PulseGuard but in a more compact form.

The Epilepsy Society have been PulseGuard’s product test bed for over a year, allowing the product range to be perfected and tailored to meet the specific needs of everyone from the more independent clients to the profoundly disabled and children.

The Epilepsy Society and other care providers using PulseGuard products have found that better seizure detection and monitoring can help lead to better drug and seizure management, improving the user’s quality of life and allowing peace of mind to the family or caregiver.

Pock-iT’s design is suitable for all age groups and abilities. The sensor strap is available in two sizes and a range of colours, whilst the sensor itself is small lightweight, waterproof, and hypoallergenic and can be worn either on the wrist, ankle or upper leg. It connects wirelessly via Bluetooth to the simple stylish touchscreen interface on the bespoke Pock-iT iPod which has easy to setup controls.

Pock-iT has a handy tool located in the top right-hand corner of the screen which will tell you what the users heart rate has gone up or down to every time they wear it, this allows for anyone to work out the users averaging heart rate and safely determine the accurate levels to set, so as to not trigger false alarms but to detect seizure activity and also any drop to the heart rate such as in the event of a respiratory or cardiac arrest which can lead to the onset of SUDEP.

The heart rate is set completely uniquely for each individual user, using a simple sliding scale for the upper and lower heart rate and once these levels are set, they are stored for each and every use. Pock-iT continuously references the user’s heart rate for the entire time the sensor is connected to the software and should the reading breach the upper or lower levels your caregiver is alerted immediately via Alert-iT’s failsafe pager.

Pock-iT is designed to alert to a range of seizure types (providing the user has a change to the heart rate) from silent tonic or absence seizures that may not trigger traditional monitors. To atonic (drop seizures) where research has shown that a sudden drop in the heart rate can occur up to 10 seconds prior to a seizure, potentially allowing for an early warning to the user or caregiver allowing time to make themselves safe and prevent injury.

As the Pock-iT sensor is waterproof it is also helping promote better independence allowing the user to shower or bath independently in some cases for the first time, knowing that should they suffer a seizure their caregiver can be waiting close by and alerted immediately by the Alert-iT fail safe pager.

Although Pock-iT was originally developed for seizure detection, it is also being used for clients that suffer from dysphagia, apnoea episodes, diabetes management, POTS, and other medical conditions that cause a sudden change to the heart rate making it the most versatile and affordable safeguarding piece of equipment for thousands of households worldwide.

Epilepsy is one of the most complex medical conditions in the world. This makes it difficult for even healthcare professionals to understand, let alone patients and families living with the condition daily.

Just when you think you are starting to understand your condition, you are often thrown a curveball and your seizure type or pattern changes, or a medication you have been successfully using for years stops working.

Epilepsy is difficult to predict and you often find yourself second guessing when a seizure may strike. Often when you are ill, overtired, stressed or have a sudden change to your everyday routine, seizures can become more frequent. But you also have those seizures that can happen without warning and with no rhyme or reason behind them, leaving you pondering if anything has changed lately that may have triggered them.

The fact is that there are so many varying types of epilepsy from genetic conditions you are born with, to a brain illness or injury that causes a sudden onset of epilepsy at any point in your life. This makes it difficult for some people to understand their epilepsy and what types of seizures they may have.

What makes it even harder is the fact that over the years some terminology has changed that describes seizures, so you may hear different words to describe your specific seizure type and not understand the meanings, or if in fact they are describing the same type of seizure just with using different words.

As with everything, knowledge is the key and the more you understand about epilepsy the better informed you can be to choose the right help and support for you and your family and tap into services and products available to help you live your life to the full. We have tried to break down the language barrier with this handy guide to seizure types and terminology so that you can understand epilepsy a little bit better.

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ALERT-IT AND PULSEGUARD ARE DELIGHTED TO ANNOUNCE THEIR NEW PARTNERSHIP. THIS PAIRING WILL BRING CARE TECHNOLOGY USERS THE BEST POSSIBLE OPTIONS ON THE MARKET

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With great sorrow, we must announce the passing of David Godfrey, founder of Alert-iT Care alarms. After a short illness, David died at home on the 16th of September with his family by his side.  All here at Alert-iT extend our most sincere condolences to Janet his wife, and daughters Kathryn, Clare, and Ruth.

From the moment that David established Alert-iT, he has been both a leader and a friend to everyone who became part of our team. We are privileged to have helped David create a business with caring at its heart that truly became a passion, and a calling.

Though David cherished Alert-iT as the most profound achievement of his career, what came before was no less impressive. Druck Limited, a major Leicestershire business that would later become part of the global GE group, owes much of its success and renown to David. Joining the company at the very beginning, David gave 30 years to Druck, rising to become Engineering Director. A gifted inventor, always driven, forever innovating and overcoming the seemingly impossible challenges presented by countless precision products in dozens of sectors, it was only fitting that the company’s Groby site flew its flags at half-mast on hearing of David’s loss.    

David made a huge and positive impression on all who met him, and so many benefitted from his knowledge, nurturing and inspiration. That he loved life, and loved to be amongst people was plain for all to see. His colleagues and business partners invariably became close friends, and everyone who knew David – whether professionally, or through his church, his music or simply by chance – will always miss him enormously.  

At Alert-iT, we feel honoured to take our place as a crucial part of David’s legacy. We all realise just how strongly he believed in us, and we are eager to continue taking his dream from strength to strength, into tomorrow and for many years to come.

After all, and in his own words:

‘The greatest pride I can have is in my team of dedicated and caring staff at Alert-iT who seek to build on that success and provide Plesiocare monitoring of the highest standard to support carers.’

Goodbye David.
An amazing man with an amazing spirit.
Thank you.

 

Rather than sending flowers, David asked that you would make a charity donating to pancreatic cancer research. To do so, click here.  

Alert-iT’s assistive medical technology products will soon be found in private dwellings and care homes across Norway.

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The Winter season is upon us, full of crispy mornings, jack frost gardens, hot cups of tea with pretty fairy light decorations to the tune of Frank Sinatra. It can also be a difficult season for our beloved elderly if care homes, hospital’s and families are not equipped with a ‘Fall Management Program’ – so what’s that exactly?

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The Best SUDEP Awareness Advice?

Bring it out of the shadows.

As part of SUDEP Awareness Day on 23rd October our team is on a mission to raise as much SUDEP Awareness and supporting those living with epilepsy. We?ve dedicated this month?s blog and social media content to raising SUDEP Awareness and encourage as much online conversation about it as possible.?So please SHARE this onwards to help educate the world with us!

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