News out of the annual Consumer Electronics Show often focuses on the most exciting new tech gadgets, from next-gen TVs to the latest VR headsets.
But another component of the show is the latest in medical technology. Accessibility was one of the big topics at the just-wrapped CES 2024, which took place Jan. 7-10.
One device in particular could make life much easier for people living with diseases such as multiple sclerosis or Parkinson’s, a progressive neurological disorder that causes chronic, uncontrollable tremors in the hands. High-profile Parkinson’s patients include Michael J. Fox, Ozzy Osbourne and Alan Alda.
The GyroGlove, showcased by U.K.-based firm GyroGear at CES this month, is a medication-free way for Parkinson’s patients to manage hand tremors — and bring a little normalcy back to their lives.
Here’s a video from the company showing off the product:
GyroGear brought one of the Glove’s users to CES to share her experiences with the assistive device.
“It’s a life changer for me,” Roberta Wilson-Garrett, who lives with Parkinson’s, told Agence France-Presse, via Science Alert. She showed how the GyroGlove stabilizes her hand enough to draw clearly with a pen.
Wilson-Garrett described to Engadget how the glove allows her to button her shirt and safely drink a cup of coffee, too.
The idea is that the movement of the gyroscope counteracts the force of the person’s tremor, allowing them to move their hand more smoothly. The design is simple, ensuring users can easily take the battery-powered glove on and off themselves.
The glove itself is made of soft, machine-washable fabric and fastens with a zipper. A small gyroscope — a mechanical device that spins and readjusts itself as it’s moved — is mounted in a housing on top of the glove, on the back of the hand. There is also a battery pack attached, and users may be able to get from 4 hours to 2 days’s worth of battery life out of it, depending on the frequency of the tremors.
It’s a mechanical solution to one of Parkinson’s key symptoms. Medication may help as well, but side effects can be severe and its efficacy may wane over time.
GyroGlove won three Innovation Awards at CES 2024; it was honored in the categories of Accessibility and Aging Tech, Digital Health and Wearable Technologies.
GyroGear founder Dr. Faii Ong told AFP that the GyroGlove should allow shaking symptoms to fade into the background for users.
“We want to bring the focus away from the disease and back onto the fact that this is human life we are talking about,” Ong said. “That is what tech should do; it’s more important to focus back on ourselves as people and to understand how we can actually make people’s lives better.”
Although it has not yet been cleared by government agencies such as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the hand-stabilizing glove is already available for preorder at GyroGear’s website. It has a regular price of $5,899, but you can buy it now for $1,000 off, at $4,899.
‘GyroGlove’ could be a game-changer for those who experience hand tremors originally appeared on Simplemost.com