Unfortunately, the news about diabetes in the U.S. remains bleak. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the rate of diabetes in the United States continue to rise. The CDC projects that by 2050 1 of every 3 American adults could have the disease. According to the latest figures, from 2014, the CDC reports that 29.1 million people in the U.S. have diabetes and another 86 million have prediabetes.
Diabetics have a particularly hard time with their feet from a variety of lower extremity conditions due to poor circulation. The presenting diagnoses from foot problems are peripheral artery disease, foot ulcers, infection, inflammation, and neuropathy (loss of sensation from nerve damage). According to Siren Care, 1.5 million patients develop foot ulcers in the U.S. each year, of whom 20 percent will need eventual amputation and 50 to 70 percent die within five years.
Successful treatment of foot ulcers is only possible by prevention. The best way to prevent foot ulcers is early detection of rising temperature in the feet. People who have lost sensation in their feet, or neuropathy, due to nerve damage related to diabetes will not be able to detect temperature increases or hot spots on their feet. Siren Care’s Siren Smart Socks are not considered a medical device, and cannot claim to prevent or diagnose any medical condition. They are designed solely to detect temperature increases in six locations on the bottom of each foot via sensors embedded in the socks. The socks, which are available in black or white, are washable and because they are seamless, they do not create pressure points anywhere on your feet, according to the manufacturer.
The temperature sensors in the socks are continuously monitored by a Bluetooth low-energy transmitters. If the sensors detect a hot spot, an alert is sent to an associated iOS or Android app. Once a patient receives an alert, that’s a prompt to check both feet for sores and inform their healthcare team. In addition to monitoring foot temperature, the socks also track activity to encourage good exercise habits.
The socks are sold in a set of 7 pairs and are rated to last for six months before needing replacement, which, according to Healthline, is standard for diabetic socks. The coin-shaped batteries in the transmitters will also last the full six months and do not need recharging. According to Siren Care, the Siren Smart Socks, which are available for pre-order, will have a retail price of $180 for seven pairs. The pre-order price is $120 for the first order. The socks are sold on a subscription basis with a new box of seven pairs of socks arriving each month.