Serial inventor Liz Paul has developed an innovative testing kit that clearly identifies the symptoms of meningitis and septicaemia. Menitest™, developed to provide ‘Peace of Mind for Parents’, was first conceived when it was suspected Liz’s nephew had contracted the disease.
With the recent spate of high profile cases of meningitis and over 4,000 cases per year, this product will bring a sigh of relief to parents of young children who, according to the Department of Health, “Fear Meningitis above any other disease”.
The product has been designed to eliminate the confusion and potential issues surrounding the traditional ‘tumbler test’, developed by the Meningitis Research Foundation in 1996.
Julia Warren, Head of Communications for the Meningitis Research Foundation said:
“The Meningitis Research Foundation welcomes any development that helps parents recognise the warning signs of meningitis and septicaemia and educates new audiences of the importance of vigilance.”
The ‘tumbler test’, has previously been the recommended way to check whether a rash is a symptom of meningitis. By placing a clear glass tumbler firmly onto the spots the rash should fade if it is not indicative of the disease - only when the rash remains should you get medical help immediately. At times of panic, individuals – particularly parents with young children – can easily forget whether the rash should fade or not and that mistake could prove fatal.
Menitest™ is clearly labelled with instructions that are imprinted onto the casing. The test consists of two simple stages. First the cover must be removed and the clear lens pressed firmly onto the rash, it then instructs that if the rash does not fade to seek medical advice immediately.
With over 4,000 cases last year and a 10% mortality rate, Meningitis and Septicaemia can strike without warning and can be fatal. Almost half of all cases in the UK occur in the under fives with a high risk of serious and permanent disability affecting survivors. Hearing loss is one of the most common long-term after effects of meningitis that affects up to one quarter of survivors.
After conducting an intensive programme of research and a series of focus groups, Liz ascertained a lack of awareness and understanding surrounding the symptoms of meningitis and the ways it could be recognised. Inspired by the confusion surrounding the ‘tumbler test’ and, following a traumatic personal experience, Menitest™ was created.
Liz Paul commented today; “Meningitis and Septicaemia is a serious condition that can be fatal. It affects a staggering 3,000 families each year with a high mortality rate. There is a great deal of confusion surrounding the symptoms and this was my inspiration in inventing Menitest™.
“However, these statistics do not begin to fully describe the awful and devastating effects of the disease. Menitest™ has been designed to provide peace of mind for parents, to provide calm in a situation where the natural reaction may be panic - to be able to help a mother make the right decision when her baby is ill would give me the most satisfaction and I am confident that Menitest™ can do just that.”
Liz Paul is a director of Medaro Medical, a company that has also invented award winning products including the Vielle Clitoral Stimulator for which she won British Female Inventor of the Year for Health Products in 2003. Other inventions and product developments are for diet, menopause and sexual problems.
Her libido patch for women, Scentuelle, won a Gold Award for Media Relations in 2005 and the SFM Patch for male libido won a Double Gold Award at the British Invention Show in November 2006.
Liz and her team are working with the Meningitis Research Foundation and will donate a percentage of all profits to the charitable organisation. The Meningitis Research Foundation funds research to prevent meningitis and septicaemia and to improve survival rates and outcomes. It promotes education and awareness to reduce death and disability and provides support to those people who are affected by the disease.
Menitest™ will be available to buy online at www.menitest.co.uk from June 13th.