BioAnalytics and Romar - changing the lives of sleep apnoea sufferers
What is obstructive sleep apnoea?
Sleep apnoea is a serious medical condition that affects about 10% of the global population.
The Morrison government in Australia recently released a report called ‘Bedtime Reading’. The study estimates that sleep apnoea costs the Australian economy $26 billion annually due to lost productivity, accidents and shorter life spans.
It’s more than just feeling tired all day and keeping your partner awake with loud snoring. If you have sleep apnoea, the walls of your throat come together while you sleep. This blocks off your upper airway and stops you from breathing properly.
Airway blockages mean you can stop breathing for 10 to 60 seconds or until your brain registers this and tells you to wake up.
This is often followed by a snort or gasping sound as your upper airway opens. Most of the time you won’t notice, however your partner certainly will.
The pattern of waking can repeat itself hundreds of times per night, leaving you exhausted the next day. Not only that, it affects your overall health.
How does sleep apnoea affect your health?
It’s important to know that sleep apnoea affects more than your sleep. Untreated sleep apnoea has an impact on your health and is associated with many medical conditions. These include diabetes, heart disease and fatty liver disease.
The image below shows the health impacts of sleep apnoea on the entire body. Let’s explore how it can harm the different systems in the body.
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure or CPAP - the most common treatment option
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) and Automatic Positive Airway Pressure (APAP) are considered the most effective treatment for OSA.
CPAP delivers one level of pressure continuously throughout the night whereas APAP automatically adjusts using an algorithm.
CPAP & APAP devices work by delivering a gentle flow of air to the back of your throat using a mask.
This flow of air creates positive air pressure which forms an air splint that stops your airway from collapsing. This eliminates snoring and sleep apnoea.
The new BioAnalytics device - an alternative to CPAP
BioAnalytics is an Australian start up, headed up by Owen Morgan. Owen is working closely with our experienced team of engineers at Romar to develop a new device that is set to change the lives of sleep apnoea sufferers.
As discussed above, CPAP is the standard form of treatment for sleep apnoea patients. However, for approximately 30% of patients this is not suitable. Primarily, this is down to comfort, both physical and psychological.
In conjunction with Romar, the BioAnalytics team developed a new sleep apnoea device that is 1/10 the cost of current therapies and more comfortable to use. It will monitor patients’ quality of sleep and can be used by those 40% of patients who can’t use traditional therapies.
“This product is a real game changer in the sleep apnoea market. It’s a world first.”– Owen Morgan.
BioAnalytics will soon begin an 6-month clinical trial of their new device. It is fully tooled and the design is complete. Their partnership with Romar has allowed them to reach this point successfully.
The BioAnalytics and Romar relationship
BioAnalytics connected with Romar through a product design firm. They sought a manufacturer with silicone and product development expertise. Ideally, they wanted a manufacturing partner who could help them develop their product from concept to production reality. They didn’t want to work with a variety of firms to achieve their product goals.
“Romar is very unique in the Australian landscape because they have engineering and product development capabilities. This includes tool design, tool manufacturing, prototyping and production.”
For companies that have a new product that is broadly defined and is ready to go from concept to prototype phase, then Romar is an ideal partner. Owen describes the relationship he has with Romar as a very collaborative and innovative one.
“Neil Wilson and Alan Lipman both have a genuine interest in products that make a difference. Their engineering team is very responsive and open to innovation and problem solving.”
What does the future hold?
The new BioAnalytics sleep apnoea device will soon start an 6-month clinical trial in Australia. Following this trial, Bioanlaytics will seek regulatory approval both in Australia and the US.
Romar will be with them every step of the way. We will manufacture every device for the trial and into the future for its global product release. These are certainly exciting times for both Romar and BioAnalytics.