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Russell Fearon and partner standing with the winning checks


Wearable glucose monitoring device

How it started

Diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at age 19, SugEx founder Russell Fearon began taking insulin and checking his blood sugar four times a day — a process he found awkward and cumbersome.

“Diabetes comes with a lot of baggage, literally. During the day I carry this ugly kit with all these things … my lancet, glucose meter, test strips and needles. Fumbling with them is embarrassing,” Fearon said. He looks for privacy whenever he has to test his blood sugar “At night, I leave it at home because who’s carrying all that? Not me.”

The alternative is a continuous glucose monitor, which he found expensive and uncomfortable to replace.

Seeing other millennials with diabetes also struggling with the daily requirements to stay healthy, Fearon, a mechanical engineer, knew there had to be a better way. So he designed the SugEx watch, a wearable glucose monitoring system.

How it works

Inside the SugEx watch is a tiny automatic needle that pokes the forearm, which many people with diabetes already use as an alternative site because it hurts less than the finger. Once the test strip is inserted, the watch does the rest of the work to collect and calculate the user’s blood sugar.

The attractive, contemporary watch will help users stay on top of their diabetes with alerts, reminders and a phone app. Parents and doctors can help monitor a child’s glucose throughout the day using the app.

What’s next

SugEx is collecting data from beta clients. Details are expected to be available by the end of 2020. The project is also managing the complexities of securing trademarks and understanding the many regulations tied to developing a medical device.

What’s needed

Funding, as well as design and research space.

SugEx’s mission is to help the millions of adults and children in the U.S. living with diabetes to improve compliance with blood sugar monitoring.Russell Fearon


Russell Fearon, CEO/Founder
SugEx, Syracuse, NY

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