A couple of years ago, I was knocked down (again) by a car whilst I was ‘frozen’ in the middle of the road during a focal seizure. That was the day I decided that enough was enough: I was going to have to take control and do something about it. So I invented the Seizure Alert Cane.
Basically it is just a normal disabled cane that is coloured differently. It is white, to signify the disability, and purple at the end, for epilepsy. When you’re holding it, and acting strangely, it is easier for people around you to understand that there is a medical condition affecting you; they are less likely to assume that you are staggering or standing still because you are obstinate or drunk. Unlike a plain medical ID bracelet, it can also be seen from a distance: by car drivers, for example (Why not use both?).
The full description and why it is needed, read the patent application document from 31 July 2014. I published the idea in the patent journal to ‘claim’ the idea as an inventor, but not the patent or rights. It is released on a Creative Commons Non-Commercial License.
If you have frequent seizures, and you want people to know you have epilepsy, it might be something to think about. If you have less frequent seizures, you probably won’t be interested. Well, I wouldn’t be. (Think of this as for the poor folks who have lots).
These days I am very unsteady on my feet as well. So I have painted my walking stick white and purple. If you have no mobility problems (like me, 3 years ago, when I invented this) then a small fold-up white-and-purple cane in your pocket might be just the ticket. Take it out when you feel an aura coming on to give bystanders a visual sign that you are not drunk. Even if you can’t talk because you are in a seizure – or coming out of one – you can let the cane do the talking for you.
Watch this space for the smart gadget version!
Please do share this post to raise awareness of the device. The more people who recognise the white-and-purple cane, the more people with epilepsy can be protected from harm. Drivers and passers-by do not recognise all seizure types. Let’s use technology – a very simple technology – to change that.
@epilepsytech on Twitter