Health Care

Siren raises $3.4 million for smart socks that track diabetic health

Siren raises $3.4 million for smart socks that track diabetic health”

Diabetes is one area of the healthcare space that seems to have become a particular area of focus for technology companies, and for good reason.

In the USA, the costs of diabetes are staggering.

That represents an enormous opportunity, even if you're only taking on a subset of the problem.

"That is more expensive than any form of cancer". They're also machine-washable and don't need to be charged.

On Wednesday, the company launched its first product, Siren Diabetic Socks, which are created to help people with diabetes avoid amputations, while at the same time announcing that it raised a $3.4 million round of seed funding. Siren also announced a $3.4 million investment from DCM, Khosla Ventures and Founders Fund. Prior to this round, Siren previously raised $400,000 from 500 Startups and angels.

The Siren system includes a variety of patented technologies that enable the standard manufacturing of integrated sensors and simultaneous pairing of multiple devices. These sensors continuously monitor the temperature of each foot at six key locations. "We think the future is people wearing their comfy pajamas, their comfy socks, their comfy gloves, and these clothes having super powers", said Ran Ma. Inflammation can lead to foot ulcers, but diabetics who suffer from nerve damage experience numbness in the legs and feet, which is why symptoms are often ignored. About 56 percent of diabetic foot ulcers become infected, and 20 percent of those with infected foot wounds end up with some type of amputation. Meanwhile, a study in California in 2014 found that diabetics in low-income neighborhoods were 10 times more likely to lose a foot or leg than their wealthier counterparts.

Siren's goal is to put more power into the hands of people suffering from diabetes and negate the need for life-altering amputations. Over the years, Siren has fine-tuned its development process to more seamlessly integrate the technology into the socks.

The service just launched this Wednesday, and for the next 30 days can be purchased at a rate of US$19.95 per month.

As for other ways to detect injuries, those "have limitations" that Ma says Siren's socks do not encounter.

Current solutions for diabetic foot monitoring rely on non-continuous and manual measurement.

The best thing about the socks is that they look and feel like a regular pair of socks.

Siren has developed Neurofabric, a textile with microsensors embedded directly into the fabric.

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