Over the past few years, Neurallys has been developing an implantable intracranial pressure (ICP) monitor that could benefit those afflicted with Hydrocephalus. This monitor is designed to be used in-line with the catheter tubing of the shunt and is Bluetooth enabled to send readings to a patient’s smartphone. This info could then be sent to the patient’s doctor for further review.
This ICP monitor would be independently functioning so that it does not interfere with the shunt. It can be implanted under the skin at the same time as the valve. Currently, intracranial pressure measurements can only be done at the hospital. This device, while not replacing those measures, can show the optimal opening for the valve and provide an early warning of pressure changes especially when the patient develops symptoms of concern.
In 2019 Neurallys preclinically tested the first generation of this device. The first in-human study is currently planned for 2023.
This ICP monitor has the potential to save many lives. I see this as being extremely beneficial for non-verbal people or with people who have a difficult time explaining what they are feeling. My daughter Carmen falls into this latter group. She could tell you that she was in pain, but could not explain in what way. This technology will help take the guess work out of trying to make a diagnosis with people in these groups. It will reduce the number of misdiagnosis.
Could this technology have saved Carmen’s life? Perhaps. Who is to really say? This article is not about “Where was this technology years ago?” This article is about education, making people aware that this new technology exists and how we can help push this type of research forward.
The development of this technology is a further reminder as to why it is extremely important to participate in fundraisers like the WALK to End Hydrocephalus. Research and development in finding a cure for Hydrocephalus continues to make strides every day. This technology, while not a cure, is a potential huge step forward in helping to save lives of those who have Hydrocephalus.
Neurallys is a French startup based at the Paris Brain Institute. They are currently collaborating with Mount-Sinai Hospital in New York.
Information for this article was taken from the Neurallys website and the Hydrocephalus Association website.