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Venture Challenge Participant Prolira makes early detection of delirium possible

With a cash injection, knowledge and a large network in healthcare, Holland Venture, Health Innovations and two business angels are helping to make Prolira’s Delirium Monitor the new international standard for detection of delirium.

Delirium, an acute state of confusion, is a serious medical condition. Delirium is common and particularly affects hospitalized elderly. It is an anxious experience that can lead to serious consequences, such as increased mortality risk, a longer stay in the hospital and long term cognitive impairment (dementia) and high health care costs. Patients who have experienced a delirium can often not go back to the life they had before and need to go to a nursing home. Research indicates, the sooner a delirium is treated the better. Early detection helps to limit the impact on patients and saves costs.

Rutger van Merkerk, CEO of Prolira: “For millions of patients worldwide the improvement of delirium detection is important. This financial injection makes the development and production of a great health care innovation possible.” Annemarie Willems, CCO of Prolira adds: “Hospitals in the Netherlands, Germany and Great Britain are ready to work with the Delirium Monitor. US hospitals have also shown interest, because we help tackle the growing delirium problem in a very practical way.”

Prolira develops a medical device, to detect delirium early and objectively. The company is a spin-off of the University Medical Center Utrecht (UMCU), and is based on clinical research led by neurologist-intensivist Prof. Dr. Arjen Slooter, who wants to improve the grip on delirium for everyone. Measurement of brain activity (EEG, a biomarker) proves to be effective and a good objective measure; 90% of the delirium cases are expected to be recognized. That is a great improvement over the current available, subjective, methods.

If detection is achieved at an early stage, intervention can be done quickly and appropriately, limiting negative consequences for patients. The Prolira Delirium Monitor measures brain signals from the patient through electrodes incorporated in a headband, that is easy to apply. A compact, portable monitor presents the results to care professionals. Prolira is the first and only party that makes delirium detection possible using EEG signals.

Hubert Verbeek, managing partner Holland Venture: “Delirium is a major problem for patients and hospitals. There is a great need for an easy solution that detects a delirium quickly and accurately. The Delirium Monitor contributes to a reduction of health care costs and an increase in the quality of care. We are excited to help Prolira make this monitor available as soon as possible.”

Linze Dijkstra, managing partner Health Innovations: “We have been following UMCU’s delirium detection developments for several years. We are very impressed by the progress that has been made with the detection of delirium on the basis of EEG signals. The next step is to make this technology available to patients and hospitals as a product. Health Innovations is happy to play a role, as this product will improve patient care.”

Please visit the website of Prolira for more information.