Buzzy for Pain Relief

Votes: 19
Views: 5724

Shots are the most feared part of medical care. Immunizations may only hurt for a second, but can result in a lifetime of needle phobia for 22% of adults. The costs of 1/5 of the population avoiding medical treatment, refusing blood donation, and neglecting flu shots due to needle pain fear is uncalculated. There are currently no over-the-counter aids for sharp pain, placing patients at the mercy of healthcare providers. Current prescription methods of reducing needle pain cost up to $12 per site and require up to 1 hour to be effective. An inexpensive, fast-acting over the counter product that could effectively reduce pain and anxiety for children and adults could reduce morbidity and mortality worldwide. Buzzy is the solution.

Buzzy® is a cute palm-sized vibrating plastic bee with a removable ice pack for extra numbing, a tummy slot for distraction cards, and center slot for an optional hands-free strap. Just as running a burn under water stops the hurt, pressing Buzzy's cool numbing and tingly vibration physiologically blocks pain downstream. Put Buzzy on the shoulder for shots, on the palm for fingersticks, on a forehead for Botox, or on a shin to clean a scrape. Moreover, as itching passes on the same pain fibers, any irritant from eczema to mosquito bites can be soothed.

Buzzy is reusable and inexpensive enough to be purchased for home use, putting effective procedural pain control in patients' hands. Healthcare workers often don’t have time or motivation to address pain; only 6% of physicians offices offer pain relief for shots. Buzzy’s primary market is any of the 22% of adults who hate shots, or parents savvy enough to empower kids to turn fear into fun. Why fight a trip to the doctor? For children’s hospitals who require pain relief for accreditation, Buzzy is the fastest, most inexpensive option available. In a randomized controlled trial, Buzzy decreased IV pain by half in children. Healthcare markets include dermatologists, home infusions, orthopedic injections, diabetes, allergy shots, and even dentistry.

Buzzy is injection molded plastic with a small cylinder motor and a switch. The natural undulations of the bee-shaped body maximize surface contact. The channel in Buzzy’s sides allow tourniquet use for increased compression, saving a step for nurses and making placement intuitive. Velcro can be used at home, facilitating one-person delivery of insulin or attaching to the palm for fingerstick glucose testing. The belly slot is a taper fit holder for distraction cards, simple counting and finding games that can cognitively occupy patients, block the sight of procedures, and further draw attention away from the injection process. Production costs should be scalable, to facilitate quick movement to widespread over-the-counter availability.
This is the first proven effective product that gives patients at home control sharp pain, while facilitating portable pain relief to a hospital or doctor’s office that doesn’t offer analgesia. In contrast to pharmaceuticals and numbing agents to mitigate needle pain, Buzzy provides a safe, natural alternative to take the sting out of shots.


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  • Name:
    Amy Baxter
  • Type of entry:
  • Profession:
  • Number of times previously entering contest:
  • Amy's favorite design and analysis tools:
    electrical tape, a hammer, soldering iron, and busted cell phone parts
  • Amy's hobbies and activities:
    Buzzy for pain relief! And SciFi, Space
  • Amy belongs to these online communities:
    MedScape, AAP, ACEP, LInked In
  • Amy is inspired by:
    Patients are at the mercy of the medical system, which is oriented to solving problems but not preventing pain. To encourage rehabilitation and preventative healthcare, it is critical that there be no barriers to home pain management. Products like VibraCool can both soothe and heal at home, empowering patients to control pain without narcotic medications. Eliminating unnecessary pain and suffering, and removing the stigma of fear, inspire me. After talking to patients who put off surgeries due to fear of pain or need for medications, I adapted my proven needle pain solution "Buzzy" to other situations needing a fast acting pain management tech solution that is wearable for convenience. I keep going for the people who tell me our products change their lives.
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