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T-Haler digital inhaler turns battling asthma into an instructional game

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Cambridge Consultants has created the T-Haler, a wireless digital training inhaler that monitors their usage of the device to help teach proper technique.

T-haler Wireless Inhaler System
T-haler Wireless Inhaler System

From Wi-Fi-enabled scales to activity-tracking bracelets, we're seeing unique new ways that technology can make the mundane engaging and help our health and well-being in the process. The same idea is being applied in an instructional way with the T-Haler. Created by Cambridge Consultants, the T-Haler is a training device designed to help children and adults better utilize the traditional asthma inhaler — a deceptively-nuanced piece of equipment that some studies claim is misused by as many as 75 percent of patients. The T-Haler monitors whether the inhaler has been properly shaken, and then measures both the inhalation strength of the patient as well as when the medication canister is depressed. It then transmits the data wirelessly to the company's software, which provides real-time feedback for patients to better grasp the proper technique. The T-Haler is just a prototype at the moment, but with a marked potential for upside in aiding patients — in its own testing, Cambridge Consultants found that the success rate for proper inhaler use jumped from 20 percent to 60 percent when the T-Haler was introduced — we wouldn't be surprised to see it make its way to market sooner rather than later.