The Galway based medical start-up has secured €3.7 million in funding for it’s device treating diabetic foot, one of the most devastating complications of diabetes.
Diabetic foot is the name given to a complication from diabetes that results in foot ulcers that are often serious enough to require amputation if not caught in time.
Bluedrop Medical was founded in Galway by medical device engineers Chris Murphy and Simon Kiersey who wanted to leverage modern digital tech to make diagnosing diabetic ulcers easier and quicker.
This year they have raised a total of €3.7 million for the development of their advice after Angel Investor syndicate HBAN led a €1.2 million round of fundraising recently.
Earlier in the year Bluedrop was awarded a €2.5M grant through the European Innovation Council.
Many diabetics suffer from nerve damage in their lower extremities known as peripheral neuropathy resulting in reduced or eliminated sensation in their legs and feet.
This reduction in sensation means that cuts and sores go unnoticed by the patient and can develop into ulcers.
These ulcers are often not identified until days or weeks after they first occur and healing is often extremely slow, taking months or even years to heal.
In many cases the wounds become infected which can lead to amputation in order to stop the infection spreading.
In Ireland, more than 540 amputations are carried out on patients with diabetes every year as a result of foot ulcers caused by nerve damage.
Bluedrop are developing a AI-powered temperature monitoring device that will allow that can be used in the home for the early detection of any potential ulcers.
The device is used to take a daily scan of the patient’s feet and sends the data to the cloud for analysis through advanced algorithms capable of detecting abnormalities.
By detecting skin damage early, the technology could enable healthcare providers to prevent hundreds of thousands of amputations, improving lives and significantly reducing costs.
The funding will help founders, Chris Murphy and Simon Kiersey, continue to develop their device, carry out clinical trials and bring it to market in Europe and the US.
Chris Murphy, CEO and co-founder, Bluedrop Medical, said “We founded this company with the aim of improving outcomes and reducing the treatment costs associated with chronic disease.”
He claimed that this device could save the Irish health service as much as €40 million a year
In the next two years, Bluedrop Medical will hire 10 people in the areas of software development, quality and regulatory affairs, clinical trial management and commercial strategy development.
In the recent round of investment, HBAN was the single biggest investor, putting in €340,000 of the syndicates own money.
John Phelan, all-island director at HBAN, said that Bluedrop is a prime example of the innovation occurring here in Ireland being supported by angel investors.
One of the HBAN angel investors, Dr Colin Henehan, who has more than 20 years experience in the pharmaceuticals sector, has been appointed to the board of Bluedrop.
Enterprise Ireland and the Western Development Commission also invested in the funding round along with other members of the investment community.