Were you wondering why Google sent members of its mysterious Google X research group to meet with the FDA‘s eye department a few days ago? Wait no longer: Google will be entering into the medical device foray with a stunner. It announced its plans for a new contact lens on its blog yesterday. However, this won’t be a more compact Google Glass – the advanced wearable is a medical device aimed at the management of diabetes.
Google is preparing the contact lens to measure glucose levels from the wearer’s tears and to beam the data wirelessly to a receiver (presumably a smart phone). Noninvasive continuous glucose monitors (CGMs) are seen as a holy grail for the management of diabetes, and Google claims its prototypes are capable of continuous readings at a rate of once per second, with less hassle and pain than current CGMs which are bulky and require needle sticks about once a week. Furthermore, Google plans on integrating tiny LEDs as instantaneous early warning systems for the user if the glucose level is out of range. The company is working with the FDA on this device, and has said that they will collaborate with experts that can bring the contact lens and its corresponding app to market for both patients and doctors to better manage diabetes together. They have already done multiple clinical trials.
Research into this technology has been explored for over a decade now, and Google may finally have the power to bring it to market. Diabetics – would you try these contacts? Let us know what you think in the comments!
Google: Introducing our smart contact lens project