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Cocoon

The portable safe space to have an epileptic seizure

What it does

Cocoon is a portable product designed for epileptics during seizures. For epileptics, seizures are 'normal', but there are necessary steps to ensure safety. Cocoon addresses all epileptic seizure first-aid requirements - anywhere, anytime.


Your inspiration

I was diagnosed with epilepsy at the age of 11. Since then, I've been hospitalized 4 times - 3 of them away from a safe-space and care-takers. Around 50 million people world-wide have epilepsy, with the risk of premature death up to three times higher than for the general population. The lack of care during an epileptic seizure is a poignant issue that needs to be resolved. There needs to be a product that can be deployed at the onset of a seizure, providing a safe space, and if need be, turn onlookers into care-takers.


How it works

First-aid for epileptic seizures requires that the epileptic lays on their side with their head cushioned, away from dangerous objects. This we will define as a safe space. Cocoon is a portable safe space. When not in use, a pocket on the side makes Cocoon a travel pill case. Most epileptics feel the onset of a seizure. Cocoon is designed to be self-deployed during that time. The shaped cushion folds out, flanked by first-aid instructions on both sides. A built-in chip alerts a care-taker when deployed. Sensors detects the start of an episode and alerts an ambulance after 5 minutes. The cushion is designed to fit the contour of a head, and ensures that the epileptic lays on their side. The instructions provide the by-standers with the information to care for the epileptic.


Design process

Cocoon started with a set of criteria: ease of use, self sufficiency and portability. The first phase was research: talking to other epileptics, paramedics and doctors. The second phase was prototyping. The first set of prototypes concentrated on self sufficiency, the second on ease of use, and the third on portability. The end result was a collection of key features: spring steel for quick-opening, graphic instructions for by-standers, folding for portability, contoured pillow for ease of use, sensors for detecting convulsions, and a chip to call the ambulance. Features from these prototypes were then combined to create the final concept. The concept was then steadily streamlined until it became the end product. The last phase explored graphic design and form. The graphics were iterated on to ensure ease of communication, and upcoming fashion trends were considered to dictate the color schemes and form factors.


How it is different

There are two categories of epileptic products that come close to Cocoon: seizure detectors (motion detectors that alert care-takers of a seizure) and seizure protectors (headgear). However, there are no products that create a portable safe space. Care-takers may not arrive in time, and the continuous use of headgear is uncomfortable and impractical. Cocoon fills this necessary gap in the market. It provides freedom and confidence to epileptics to pursue independent lives. Cocoon deploys in seconds and ensures that all first-aid requirements are available to epileptics – any time, anywhere.


Future plans

I would like to conduct further testing and continued prototyping. Future prototypes should refine features, ensuring safety and ease of use in all conditions. The product should pass medical testing and approval by the FDA. The end goal is to bring Cocoon to market.


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