A Lincolnshire woman who created a device to control symptoms of Parkinson’s after suffering herself has seen more than 100 people fitted with her innovative invention.
Sandra McDonough, 59, from Spalding, who has battled Parkinson’s for almost two decades, launched a device called Eye Guide MC in May 2021 – which is a discreet object that hooks over your ear like a hearing aid to calibrate someone’s peripheral vision.
The device works by sending new messages to the brain due to it always being in sight, meaning the messages can overwrite signals which affect balance, speech and movement, along with tremors which are a key symptom for people with Parkinson’s.
It was born out of Sandra’s own struggles with the disease, which is still yet to have a cure. It is the fastest growing neurological condition in the world, with around 145,000 people in the UK currently suffering.
Eye Guide MC helped Sandra live in relative comfort again and she has since launched her clinic in Spalding, supported by her husband Chris as CEO of the company, along with four other members of staff due to the growing success of the business.
The company has gone from strength to strength, and the revolutionary idea behind the device has attracted attention across the globe. A recent milestone was hit that saw 100 people in the UK fitted with Eye Guide MC.
Sandra said: “It has been a very challenging and eye-opening experience setting up and establishing a business during and in the direct aftermath of a pandemic – but I wouldn’t change anything we’ve experienced so far. We’ve navigated the hurdles as a team and step by step we’ve grown our little start-up into a busy operation.
“We’re thrilled to report that we’ve now fitted more than 100 people with the device, visiting the USA and Ireland as well as various parts of the UK. The testimonials we’re receiving are what pushes us onwards.
“I can’t put into words how rewarding and fulfilling it is to hear how our device is changes the lives of people with Parkinson’s. Here’s to the next 100 – no make that 1,000! – fittings.”
Tracey Edwards, who was fitted with the Eye Guide MC in April 2022, said her Parkinson’s symptoms were now noticeably better not only for herself but to her friends and family.
She said: “You have to believe and hope don’t you, so I took a chance and travelled from West Sussex to meet Sandra and her team and receive a fitting and trial.
“The 4-hour journey home after fitting gave me hope that things were going to be different and I continued to notice positive improvements over the next few weeks.
“My friends all say they have noticed a difference in me, particularly in my posture and the way I walk. The Guide makes me feel alive again, and my most bothersome symptom – the tremor – has definitely improved, I find I’m not noticing it at all during daily activities.”