A new portable technology called MouthLab is about the size of an iPhone and can measure multiple vital health parameters in about 30 seconds while also sending the data to healthcare professionals in real time.
“One day, [MouthLab] it’s going to light up saying, ‘Hey you, there’s something wrong with your health. Or your doctor is aware of changes in your health so that he or she can contact you for more information.’ That’s what we want to do; we want to craft the ability to predict things at a very early stage, without waiting for the condition to deteriorate,” said its creator, Sathya Elumalai.
Current state of chronic disease management
In the United States, around 50% of adults have at least one chronic health condition, such as diabetes, obesity, heart disease, COPD, or asthma. Treatment for these conditions accounts for as much as 86% of the national healthcare budget. With the rising cost of care for chronic conditions, more preventative measures are underway, leading to more care at home.
There are many medical apps in the market that healthcare professionals are using to remotely monitor patients’ health. However, the current tools can only monitor patient health for one disease. How can patients with multiple conditions use a medical device to monitor and manage their multiple conditions?
A digital health solution
One company is looking to impact chronic care management with their innovative technology. Alavita Health, a digital health and chronic disease management company, designed a breakthrough non-invasive device to allow patients to read their vitals from home.
MouthLab measures multiple vital health parameters in 30 seconds and sends the data out in real time. Patients can use this device to capture temperature, blood pressure, ECG, oxygen saturation, pulse rate, respiratory rate, and more in the comfort of their homes.
Additionally, they have the ability to monitor and manage data for chronic disease patients with multiple conditions and communicate in real-time with their providers and caregivers.
Sathya Elumalai, CEO and Co-Founder of Alavita Health, shared the beginning of his entrepreneurial journey, which started as a personal mission. “Although I was a successful professional, I was a caregiver for my mom. I was trying to manage her multiple chronic conditions, and it was very stressful to be a caregiver and not understand what she was going through.”
Elumalai created MouthLab as a communication tool, not a medical device. He states: “I see MouthLab as a device that would help the communication about my mom’s health with her physician and myself as a caregiver. Now, my personal mission has translated to a global mission to help millions of patients like my mom.”
Alavita Health has been conducting research at Johns Hopkins, and they have been planning to work with partners in Boston, Texas Medical Center, and Maryland to support their studies. Alavita also participated in the MassChallenge HealthTech, formerly PULSE@MassChallenge, program last year, winning the Mayo Clinic People’s Choice Award for their innovative solution to improve chronic disease management and drug development.
Future of chronic disease management
Chronic disease management will continue to grow in importance in healthcare, especially with the increasingly aging populations. Therefore, annual healthcare expenditures will continue to focus on chronic conditions.
Technology has the potential to improve chronic disease management, lead to better clinical outcomes, increase patient engagement, and reduce costs.
Elumalai looks forward to impacting the culture of care monitoring and improving patient lives. “MouthLab was created so that it can integrate easily into patients’ lives so that they can just measure their vitals daily like brushing your teeth,” said Elumalai. His device aims to help patients become proactive about their health, which keeps him motivated as an entrepreneur.
Elumalai hopes to have opportunities to collaborate with others in the health ecosystem to drive patient outcomes. “We want to work with anyone who believes in us and thinks this is something that can also support their efforts. At the end of the day, the focus is on making a difference in healthcare.”