UCT engineers design device to aid young, elderly asthma sufferers
Cape Town - Biomedical engineers at the University of Cape Town (UCT) have designed a device which reduces the force required to activate the inhaler, improving the quality of life for asthma sufferers.
The Easy Squeezy is an attachment sleeve that fits over a standard inhaler.
Elderly people and children who suffer from asthma are at times unable to activate their asthma pumps due to the amount of force required to release the medicine.
The asthma pumps that are easy to use are expensive and are therefore inaccessible to many.
Every year, asthma kills approximately 58 500 people and there are about 3.9 million people living with the condition.
Despite the alarming statistics, the disease is often under-diagnosed and not treated properly.
The aim of this project is to change the lives of those who do not have the means to afford the expensive medical technologies.
The Easy Squeezy is designed for asthma sufferers from as young as five years to those over 70.
“We want to destigmatise the use of asthma pumps for children and have designed the sleeve to be similar to a Lego toy collectible. It’s somewhat of a ‘build-your-own’ asthma pump,” said Associate Prof Sivarasu.
The device ensures that both children and the elderly are able to use their pumps without assistance and helps to alleviate the stigma many children experience when using the pump.IOL