Devices & Diagnostics

ReliefBand, wearable designed to treat nausea, brings in $5M

From women with morning sickness and those who suffer from motion sickness to patients undergoing chemotherapy, a wearable designed to treat nausea has a large market.

ReliefBand Technologies announced today that it has raised $5 million in venture capital funding in a round led by PathoCapital. The investment will go toward bringing the company’s FDA approved wearable device designed to treat nausea to the consumer market.

The company, established in July 2015, first researched the device’s efficacy with chemotherapy patients with the goal of providing relief without using a drug that could have potential side effects. It has expanded its market to address the needs of pregnant women with morning sickness and those who suffer from motion sickness.

ReliefBand’s device, which is set to be available at the beginning of 2016, provides programmed pulses to stimulate the median nerve on the underside of the wrist, which feels like a slight tingle. There have been various acupressure bracelets designed to stimulate this nerve to help with nausea on the market, but according to Mark Goldstone, Chief Marketing Officer of ReliefBand Technologies, this is different. The technology is much more effective and allows a user to be in control of his or her treatment – turning it off and on as opposed to continuous pressure from a bracelet and instead of taking medication and facing the irreversible potential following affects.

“The problem with those [other products like SeaBand] is that they don’t accurately stimulate the acupressure point. It’s passive as opposed to active,”
Goldstone said in an interview. “They are constantly applying pressure, which over time negatively affects the effectiveness. What we do is provide a precise current and frequency, turning on and off, and that combination optimizes the efficacy.”

Goldstone explained that in clinical trials, the company found that the device worked just as well to treat nausea as the common drugs given to patients enduring chemotherapy without side effects like drowsiness, dry mouth or dizziness. In severe cases of nausea, the device used in combination with the drugs provided even better results.

The company has determined that the need for the product is vast:

“The capital and strategic resources provided by the investment announced today will take the introduction of the ReliefBand to a whole new level,” Nick Spring CEO, ReliefBand Medical Technologies, said in a company statement. “With 70% of women experiencing morning sickness during pregnancy and more than 60 million people suffering from motion sickness, ReliefBand is fulfilling a very large unmet need. As such, interest in the device that can treat the condition without any side effects has been overwhelming from investors, the medical community, retailers and consumers alike.”

Photo: ReliefBand Medical Technologies