City inventor shows ‘Make in India’ solution for piles

City inventor shows ‘Make in India’ solution for piles

A city-based inventor and a government health official unveiled a new device to address the sticky problem of piles, which they said contributes to a 40% decline in workforce efficiency.

Speaking to DH on Tuesday, Dr Rajah Vijay Kumar, described piles or hemorrhoids, as not only being one of the oldest known ailments known to humans but also the most secretive. “Husbands don’t tell wives, wives don’t tell husbands,” he said.

In an effort to keep the condition secret, sufferers spurn their doctors and instead turn to unlicensed medical practitioners for ointments, creams and suppositories, added Dr T S Prabhakar of the Karnataka Department of Health and Family Welfare.

“This new device is a way to fight back against quacks,” Dr Prabhakar said adding that the government had registered several deaths due to treatments recommended by unlicensed practitioners. Dr Prabhakar could not be reached later for clarification.

The device, which is priced at roughly Rs 6,900 per unit, involves cooling its inner nano-material to a temperature of -18 degrees C, using a common freezer. Once cooled, the device is applied to the affected area where the nano material gradually releases cold temperatures over a 10-minute period.

Dr Kumar insisted the procedure could be be done in the privacy of one’s home and was relatively non-invasive. “There is no cold shock or frostbite,” he said. “I am proud to say that I was patient number one.”

When queried about the cost of the product which might deter some Indians, Samson John, director of a renewable energy company which has partnered with Dr Kumar, insisted that it is the cheapest solution to treating piles in the market. “Ointments are a temporary measure and surgeries are expensive and time-consuming,” he said. “Of the 1,291 people who used the device in clinical trials, 88.7% said they had been cured.”

As per figures released by WHO and the Rajiv Gandhi Institute, roughly 41 million people in India suffer from piles. Furthermore, 1.2 million new cases are diagnosed every year, said Dr Kumar. Nearly 40% of these are pregnant women while 60% are people living in South India. The harmful effects of the condition is said to cause job absenteeism and a 30 to 40% drop in efficiency across the job market.