Company developing device that would predict seizures for those with epilepsy

Predicting the exact moment when someone with epilepsy will have a seizure is almost impossible.

"One of the biggest problems with epilepsy is its unpredictability. You don't know if tonight is the night you can go out with your friends because you may have a seizure," says Dr. Daniel Friedman with the neurology department at NYU Langone Health. 

But that could all change with a new device being made in Utah.

"The holy grail of epilepsy is being able to predict when you're going to have your next seizure. And so we want to create an hourly forecast of your probability of having a seizure," says Mark Lehmkuhle, the CEO and CTO of Epitel.  

He says his company made a fully functional device called Epilog that works alongside an app to read brainwaves.
Epilog is worn on the forehead or behind the ear. It connects to a phone or a tablet through Bluetooth and sends seizure reports to an app. Doctors can use the data to adjust a patient's treatment and lifestyle schedule.

"We want to give people the power of knowing how many seizures they're having so that they can plan their day with certainty," says Lehmkuhle.  

This new technology and this new device have the potential to change a lot of lives, but it does have a few hurdles to overcome.

Epilog needs to undergo clinical trials and be approved by the FDA first. Right now, it`s being tested at the University of Colorado, Boston Children's Hospital, and the NYU Langone Medical Center.

"I think there are a couple of limitations at this point. I think the Epilog device is a great first step, obviously like all technology, it would be better if it was smaller, had longer battery life," Dr. Friedman says. 

In the current model that's being tested the battery lasts 60 days, but Lehmkuhle says he wants to make it last longer and be able to charge wirelessly.

"If you had a device that told you, `Looks like you're all clear for the next several hours`, that hopefully will give somebody a lot more independence and comfort," Dr. Friedman says.