How guitar technology may help prevent SIDS

By Chris Gullo

seymourSeymour Enterprises, a new start-up that is developing a vital sign monitoring wristband for infants, and its founder, Peter Seymour, are the subject of a profile article in Arizona State University's State Press publication. Seymour was inspired to start the company after losing his daughter to positional asphyxia, a condition related to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).

Seymour was a mechanical engineering student in 2010 when his daughter, Eleanore Hayden, was born three months premature, weighing only 2 pounds, 7 ounces. Despite being premature, Eleanore was doing well, living at home for over a month, when she suddenly passed away in her sleep.

At the time of her death, Seymour worked for Fender Guitars developing a movement and rhythm sensor, which he soon realized could have medical applications.

Seymour soon started his eponymous company, now grown to include five other employees, and began working on a smaller device that can be worn as a wristband and have the vitals monitored via a smartphone. While similar vital monitoring tech can cost in the thousands of dollars, Seymour aims to get the cost of the device down to less than $50.

A prototype device is expected to be finalized by December, with production of a few hundred devices this summer. The company hopes to begin working with the FDA soon after. Seymour has future plans to expand the device's use from solely SIDS prevention to hospitals, athletics, and home care.

In early 2009, MobiHealthNews reported on a vital sign monitoring offering under development at GE Healthcare:

"Premature infants, for example, have very sensitive, fragile skin, which makes attaching sensors a painful experience. The research and development arm of the conglomerate announced that its scientists had transformed a common and widely available GE sensor, currently in-use for home security, into an “intelligent wireless medical sensing platform”. The new sensor is powered by processing algorithms that classify different types of movement and can also help caregivers closely monitor a patient’s breathing and heart rate even though it’s not in physical contact with the skin," we wrote at the time.

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For more on Seymour, read the State Press article here.

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