An 11-Year-Old Has 3D-Printed a Device That Safely Stores Diabetes Test Strips
It's well established that diabetes wreaks havoc on people's blood sugar levels, but one thing we don't usually think about is the amount of waste produced by all those blood tests that need to be taken daily when you have the disease.
Now 11-year-old William Grame from Canberra in Australia has 3D printed a device that hygienically stores all those old blood test strips, and it's small enough to fit inside a diabetic's portable test kit. His invention has won the years 5 to 6 category of the Origin Energy littleBIGidea competition, and he'll be heading off to the US to visit NASA as part of his prize.
When diabetics test their blood sugar levels throughout the day, they prick a finger and place a dot of blood on a special test strip. This is then inserted into a blood glucose meter, which tells them if they need to inject themselves with insulin to help manage their blood sugar levels.
Grame, who has type 1 diabetes, was inspired to create the device after constantly getting in trouble for leaving his test strips on the floor at home. "There are around 380 million diabetics in the world, each testing their blood at least a few times a day," said Grame at a presentation of his device this morning in Sydney.
He's tested his device over the past few months and showed that it can securely store around 50 test strips, which means he only has to empty the device into the bin once a week. In the meantime, it keeps his blood-stained strips off the floor, and makes his life, and his family's, a little easier.
He created the blueprint for the blood disposal test strip disposal unit Continue reading