About the solution
Derek is a former US Marine who got shot in the back, in 2012, by a Taliban sniper. The wound left Herrera a paraplegic.
The Connected Catheter is a technological solution for patients with neurogenic bladder. The solution is a semi-permanent, minimally-invasive, “smart catheter” system that measures bladder pressure and wirelessly transmits data to a smartphone, allows the user to control a valve to empty the urine from the bladder, eliminates the need for intermittent catheters and drainage bags, can be inserted/removed by the user (or clinician) in minutes, and is fully encapsulated in the body to reduce the risk of infection.
“I knew my life would change, but I didn't know that managing my bladder would be the most challenging task I faced on a daily basis. As a individual living each day with paralysis resulting from spinal cord injury, I understand just how terrible the current standard of care can be for managing Neurogenic Bladder”, the former marine explained.
“Although the Connected Catheter™ utilizes some highly innovative and advanced technologies, our team has taken a problem first approach to solving this issue and are trying to accomplish two primary objectives:
Tell me when my bladder is full;
Let me empty it without inserting catheters into my body 5-10 times per day”, Derek said.
After leaving the Marines, Herrera enrolled in UCLA's executive MBA program at the Anderson School of Management, which he graduated from in the summer of 2015. Towards the end of his enrollment, he co-founded Spinal Singularity, a medical startup focusing on potentially groundbreaking spinal health research.
The former marine teamed up with engineers and clinicians to develop this product.
Herrera launched an IndieGoGo crowdfunding campaign for Spinal Singularity which reached its goal of $50,000 in contributions on October 27. Fundraising through this campaign has allowed the company to make quick strides.
"The money from this fundraiser will help us build a prototype and test the device," Herrera said. "It's critical, but it allows us to not just sit on our hands for a year fundraising and waiting for grants and research money."
More info: http://www.derekherrera.com/
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