Lithuanian startup disrupts healthtech industry with a therapeutic device and a habit tracking app

More than 4% of people around the world over the age of 40 suffer from essential tremor causing an involuntary hand shaking. The medical technology startup “Vilimed”, located in Kaunas Science and Technology Park innovation community, has recently certified the hand tremor reducing medical device. It was certified to CE0197 standard and the company received EN ISO 13485: 2016. After five years of product prototyping and testing, the “Vilim ball”, which reduces hand tremor with artificial intelligence-controlled mechanical vibrations, begins its official journey to European and Asian markets.

Long-term impact requires changes in a person’s lifestyle

“The certificate means that the therapeutic device is safe and effective for patients with essential tremor and meets all applicable standards as a medical device. It is important for distribution not only geographically, but also because the device will now be available for purchase and use by medical clinics, and this opens up opportunities among the distributors of medical devices. It allows us to enter new markets of the EU, the Middle East and the Balkans,” says dr. Mantas Venslauskas.

Received certificates according to EN ISO 13485: 2016 will allow the team to certify other products developed by the company, such as “Vilimap” mobile application for tracking and developing new lifestyle habits that will reduce hand tremor.

“According to the research, the intensity of tremor is highly dependent on lifestyle components such as physical activity, diet, sleep duration, or caffeine intake. We have created a mobile application that helps to develop healthy habits and thus get more control over this disease, which causes many inconveniences,” says Dr. Venslauskas.

The startup’s team aims to automate this app, integrate it with the “Vilim” ball therapy device, and adapt it for monitoring and control of essential tremor, involving neurologists in the process.

Device production development in Lithuania

The team located in Kaunas Science and Technology Park has recently supplemented the development project manager with more than 20 years of experience in the distribution of medical devices in international markets. “Vilimed” already work on the serial production of the device. Lithuanians hope to produce the first batches of up to 1000 units themselves, later they will look forward to cooperate with Lithuanian companies.

The device mimics a tennis ball and has attracted the interest of the neurological community, both in university hospitals in major Lithuanian cities and in clinics in the USA, Kazakhstan and Russia, which have tested the device. After using a therapeutic ball, a person suffering from essential tremor can take care of themselves, perform daily chore and eat much more easily.

Originates from the research field

“The idea for the product came from writing a doctoral thesis on vibration technologies, their application in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. After starting cooperation with neurologists of Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, we started to analyze how vibration therapy helps to reduce essential tremor. We tested various frequency bands, and later, in cooperation with a strong team and volunteers, we developed a technology that created the greatest added value for its users – most effectively reduced tremor “, says Dr. Venslauskas.

Based on feedback from people who have voluntarily tested the device, “Vilim ball” can be used successfully to reduce hand tremor, especially before performing processes such as eating, writing, or other activities that require hand stability.

The startup also hopes to attract venture capital investments for development in the European market, as the potential for product adaptability is extremely wide. In the future, it is hoped to adapt the therapeutic device to patients with Parkinson disease. A couple of years ago, the “Vilimed” team participated in the business acceleration program of the Italian pharmaceutical company “Zambon” and attracted an investment of EUR 50,000. “Vilimed” is still working with this pharmaceutical company and plans to launch pilot studies with Parkinson patients in Spain in the near future.

VILIM ball device

The principle of operation of the device

VILIM ball is a handheld therapeutic device whose purpose is to temporarily reduce hand tremor, giving Essential tremor (and Parkinson’s Disease) patients a relief from the symptoms for the time they need to perform ordinary-life tasks. 90 % of those who tested VILIM ball, reported it as effective. The device’s working principles are based on vibration therapy. We gathered evidence of the fact that that 10 minutes of therapy can reduce hand tremor for a period up to 4 hours.

Usage recommendations 

For a better life quality, use VILIM ball device before the every action you want to make it easier: eating, writing, etc. It helps to reduce hand tremor for a certain time period which is individual for every person. The effect could last from 1 minute to 4 hours and could not be predicted before usage. Because it depends on individual person.

VILIM ball charging

VILIM ball is rechargeable by using a standard smartphone charger with microUSB connector. The fully charged device could work about 2 hours.

Hold the device in the palm and gently press it with your fingers. During therapy, place the hand freely, do not keep the wrist taut or twisted. Holding the device like it is shown in the picture below, the effect of the device is the best.

How to hold VILIM ball

The residual effects of therapy can vary widely and depend on the individual characteristics of each person. In practice, we have noticed that it can last from a few minutes to a few hours.

It should be considered that vibration therapy is part of a treatments that reduce hand tremor.

Recomended contraindications

Pregnancy, cancer, recent injuries, inflammation, blood clots, heart rythm disorders, ypertension, heart pacemaker. It is not recommended to use the device without a doctor’s permission in the presence of at least one of the listed symptoms.

Download Instruction for Use here:

English

Lithuanian

Polish

CUSTOMERS REVIEWS

Parduodu

★★★★★
Jeigu kamnors reikia tokio kamuoliuko parduodu uz puse kainos 860627309. Padeda geras daiktas bet pradejau vaistus vartot ir kamuoliuko nebereikia.
- Martynas

Kamoliukas

★★★★☆
Sis pretaisas man labai reikalingas ir del. sveikatos man padeda!!! Dekoju Su pagarba Ivanas
- Ivanas

padėka

★★★★★
labai dėkojame KTU mokslininkams, sukūrusiems tokį nuostabų gaminį, kuris tikrai padeda nuo rankų drebėjimo. Jūsų sukurtas Vilim kamuoliukas pripažintas metų atradimu. Šių mokslininkų ne tik geri išradimai, bet ir malonus bendravimas, geranoriška pagalba esant reikalui. Kamuoliuką laikau 3 kartus per dieną po 10 min. -tremoras žymiai sumažėjo. Poveikis išlieka ilgą laiką, rankų drebėjimas, aplamai, sumažėjo. Ačiū už šį stabuklą. Janina - zofija.
- janina

Stebuklingas ViLim balk kamuoliukas

★★★★★
Noriu Jums labai padėkoti už šį atradimą. Mamai tikrai padeda, ko tikrai nesitikėjom. Net kai kurie daktarai nustebę kai papasakojam. Manom kad reikalinga daugiau info apie tai, ne visi naudotis gali internetu, todėl daug kas apie tai nežino. Sėkmės Jums. Ir labai labai ačiū.
- Jurgita

★★★★☆
Terapija puiki, atrodo tremorą kažkiek sumažino.
- Ramūnas

★★★★★
Noriu jums labai padėkoti už jūsų atradimą. Kamuoliukas nuo virpėjimo, mano mamai labai padeda, negalėjom atsistebėti ir labai džiaugiamės. Ačiū labai ir Jums sėkmės darbuose.
- Inesa

Vilim

★★★★☆
Irenginys sumazina ranku drebuli.
- Pranas

★★★★★
Mano liga yra corticobasal syndrome ir vaistu sios ligos sukeliamiems simptomams palengvinti nera. Deka sio kamuoliuko as galiu atsipalaiduoti, ranka nurimsta. Naudoju kamuoliuka du kartus dienoje. Aciu uz puiku aptarnavima, operatyvuma.
- Jonas

„ViLim Ball“ įrenginys

★★★★☆
Mano mama serga Parkinsono liga ir šį įrenginį nusprendė išbandyti dėl rankos tremoro. Nors po pirmo įrenginio išbandymo mamai skaudėjo peties sąnarį, tačiau po trečio bandymo jau galėjo panešti lėkštę su maistu. Dabar po procedūros kurį tai laiką gali savarankiškai valgyti ir gražiai rašyti.
- Šviesa

Hand tremor reduction

Hand shake reduction for Essential tremor diseas

The results from the research shows that VILIM ball device could be effective on reducing hand tremor:

Investigation results

Open access scientific publication:

Abramavičius, Silvijus; Venslauskas, Mantas; Vaitkus, Antanas; Gudžiūnas, Vaidotas; Laucius, Ovidijus; Stankevičius, Edgaras. Local vibrational therapy for essential tremor reduction: a clinical study // Medicina. Basel : MDPI AG. ISSN 1010-660X. eISSN 1648-9144. 2020, vol. 56, iss. 10, art. no. 552, p. 1-9. DOI: 10.3390/medicina56100552.

Efficacy study No. 1 was a prospective, single-center, randomized, controlled study designed to evaluate effectiveness. 17 subjects with diagnosed Essential tremor were randomly selected and enrolled in the study. Vibrational therapy was performed for each patient on dominant hand. Collected data was filtered to evaluate the range of 4-12 Hz which is hand tremor frequency with diagnosed essential tremor. 13 of 17 patients had lower tremor in dominant hand after the therapy (α= 0.0352). Based on the collected data it was calculated, that tremor was 56 % lower after the therapy. 15 additional patients were enrolled in the study to the sham group. The investigated sham device seemed to elicit no quantifiable effect in comparison with VILIM ball.

Efficacy study No. 2 was a cross-sectional study performed in patients with Essential and Parkinsonian tremor that use the VILIM ball , to assess the safety and efficacy, of the VILIM ball.  50 patients with the mean (standard deviation) age 66.9 were included (30 in the essential tremor and 20 Parkinsonian tremor) in the study. The primary efficacy outcome was the Patient-Reported Outcome based on a non-validated patient telephone questionnaire. The secondary outcome was the occurrence of adverse events. 46 patients reported improvement in tremor symptoms and function. 4 patients (2 PD and 2 ET) reported lack of effect in terms of symptoms and function. The patients used the VILIM ball for 7.63 months. 38 patients were able to report the duration of improved function which was 90.79 minutes. 4 more patients refused to participate in the study because of no improvement in tremor during the two-week initial testing phase. No adverse events were reported by the patients in this study.

Current results gives a proof that the methodology is effective and could help people with hand tremor easily perform daily activities like writing, eating or other. The further researches will be dedicated for the optimization of the device effectiveness.

According to previous studies, the vibrational therapy could reduce hand tremor and stiffness for Parkinson’s disease by 25% and 24%, respectively. (Haas, 2006).

King et al. (2009)   have found that vibrational therapy could significantly decrease rigidity, and tremor. Results of their initial investigation provide support for vibration therapy as a non-pharmacological treatment alternative.

The next research describes the combination of the whole body vibration therapy and exercises. It was observed that this kind of therapy gives short term benefit for human motor system, posture and daily activities (Edmonston , 2016).

Heiko (2009) and others have found that the whole body vibration therapy significantly reduces hand tremor and stiffness as well as step lenght and walking speed.

CUSTOMERS REVIEWS

Parduodu

★★★★★
Jeigu kamnors reikia tokio kamuoliuko parduodu uz puse kainos 860627309. Padeda geras daiktas bet pradejau vaistus vartot ir kamuoliuko nebereikia.
- Martynas

Kamoliukas

★★★★☆
Sis pretaisas man labai reikalingas ir del. sveikatos man padeda!!! Dekoju Su pagarba Ivanas
- Ivanas

padėka

★★★★★
labai dėkojame KTU mokslininkams, sukūrusiems tokį nuostabų gaminį, kuris tikrai padeda nuo rankų drebėjimo. Jūsų sukurtas Vilim kamuoliukas pripažintas metų atradimu. Šių mokslininkų ne tik geri išradimai, bet ir malonus bendravimas, geranoriška pagalba esant reikalui. Kamuoliuką laikau 3 kartus per dieną po 10 min. -tremoras žymiai sumažėjo. Poveikis išlieka ilgą laiką, rankų drebėjimas, aplamai, sumažėjo. Ačiū už šį stabuklą. Janina - zofija.
- janina

Stebuklingas ViLim balk kamuoliukas

★★★★★
Noriu Jums labai padėkoti už šį atradimą. Mamai tikrai padeda, ko tikrai nesitikėjom. Net kai kurie daktarai nustebę kai papasakojam. Manom kad reikalinga daugiau info apie tai, ne visi naudotis gali internetu, todėl daug kas apie tai nežino. Sėkmės Jums. Ir labai labai ačiū.
- Jurgita

★★★★☆
Terapija puiki, atrodo tremorą kažkiek sumažino.
- Ramūnas

★★★★★
Noriu jums labai padėkoti už jūsų atradimą. Kamuoliukas nuo virpėjimo, mano mamai labai padeda, negalėjom atsistebėti ir labai džiaugiamės. Ačiū labai ir Jums sėkmės darbuose.
- Inesa

Vilim

★★★★☆
Irenginys sumazina ranku drebuli.
- Pranas

★★★★★
Mano liga yra corticobasal syndrome ir vaistu sios ligos sukeliamiems simptomams palengvinti nera. Deka sio kamuoliuko as galiu atsipalaiduoti, ranka nurimsta. Naudoju kamuoliuka du kartus dienoje. Aciu uz puiku aptarnavima, operatyvuma.
- Jonas

„ViLim Ball“ įrenginys

★★★★☆
Mano mama serga Parkinsono liga ir šį įrenginį nusprendė išbandyti dėl rankos tremoro. Nors po pirmo įrenginio išbandymo mamai skaudėjo peties sąnarį, tačiau po trečio bandymo jau galėjo panešti lėkštę su maistu. Dabar po procedūros kurį tai laiką gali savarankiškai valgyti ir gražiai rašyti.
- Šviesa