Slovenian startup is making it easier and faster to diagnose peripheral artery disease

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) affects about 8 million people in the US alone, according to the American Heart Association, and it can lead to strokes or heart attacks. Diagnosis is often inaccurate and time consuming, and many people who have the problem are asymptomatic. A Doppler Ultrasound and the Ankle Brachial Index (ABI) scale are […]

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) affects about 8 million people in the US alone, according to the American Heart Association, and it can lead to strokes or heart attacks. Diagnosis is often inaccurate and time consuming, and many people who have the problem are asymptomatic.

A Doppler Ultrasound and the Ankle Brachial Index (ABI) scale are standard diagnostics for PAD. They can take up to 30 minutes of a doctor’s time to administer. Blood pressures are taken one limb at a time which leads to less accurate data. Clearly this is a problem in need of a solution.
MESI was founded in November 2010 to make it easier to identify this condition. The founders developed an ABI measuring device, the ABPI MD, which allows a physician to take all three blood pressures required for the ABI measurement at one time, in about 3 minutes. The results can then be printed and stored for documentation purposes.

The idea for improved ABI diagnostics was first recommended by co-founder Matjaz Span, MD, who has extensive experience in cardiovascular medicine. He was using the Doppler ultrasound method in his daily practice but became dissatisfied with the method as it was time-consuming, inaccurate, and subjective. He teamed up with now CEO Jakob Susteric and CTO Tomo Krivc, both electrical engineers, to create the ABPI MD product.

“In the future, we want to bring the technology from consumer electronic devices to medical diagnostic devices,” Susteric said.. “An example would be having one display unit that is connected to all other measurement devices wirelessly.”

ABPI MD has been selling since 2012. On a recent interview with NewWaveHealthCare, Jakob said that MESI’s ABPI MD generated 300,000 Euros last year with projections to reach 750,000 Euros this year. They will also be launching other products later this year.

The company is based in Slovenia and has distributors in 13 countries in Europe and the Middle East. MESI’s product is not available in America but the company is in the process of getting FDA approval.

MESI is currently looking to raise $5,000,000 in venture capital. They are raising money by participating in health/tech start-up events and competitions like the Health Tech Summit, the Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE, and the QPrize. MESI is also applying to accelerators like Grants4Apps in addition to emailing targeted venture capital funds.

MESI is one of several companies looking at the arterial disease space including Boso, Microlife, and Huntleigh.