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Proteinuria Self-Test Pen

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This Global Health Medical Device is designed for or implemented within resource-limited settings - Browse the devices - Add a device

Health Topic Maternal mortality
Classification Diagnosis
Scope Prototype
Location Africa, Asia, South America

Problem being addressed

Eclampsia is a serious high blood pressure disorder that is the second-leading cause of maternal mortality in resource-constrained settings. Early detection and treatment of pre-eclampsia, a precursor condition, can dramatically decrease this cause of maternal death. However, most existing tests for proteinuria, a marker of pre-eclampsia, are unaffordable for regular use in developing countries.

Detailed description of the solution

The Proteinuria Self-Test for Early Detection of Pre-Eclampsia, or “proteinuria pen,” provides an easy-to-use and easy-to-read diagnostic test for pre-eclampsia that is expected to cost less than $0.01 per use. It uses felt-tip or ballpoint pens that are filled with reagents, which are used to mark a strip of paper. The reagents change color when exposed to high levels of urinary protein.

Designed by

  • Designed by: This device was designed by Johns Hopkins University graduate students. The project is currently under the management of Jhpiego, an international non-profit affiliated with Johns Hopkins.
  • Manufacturer location: Johns Hopkins University, Maryland, USA

When and where it was tested/implemented

Field testing in Nepal was planned as of 2011 and began as of September 2012.

Funding Source

This device received funding from the following sources:

  • USAID Development Innovation Ventures Grant 2011 ($100,000)
  • Lemelson Foundation ($10,000)
  • Johns Hopkins University


Other internally generated reports

Center for Bioengineering Innovation & Design. (2011). Jhpiego receives $100,000 grant to pilot pre-eclampsia screening device. Retrieved January 1, 2013. Link available here.

Jhpiego. (n.d.) Jhpiego among first recipients of innovation award from USAID. Retrieved January 1, 2013. Link available here.

Jhpiego. (2012). Nepal. Retrieved January 1, 2012. Link available here.

Johns Hopkins University. (2011, May 12). Screening tests for pregnant women win global health prize for Johns Hopkins students. Retrieved January 1, 2013. Link available here.

Save One. (2011.) Antenatal screening kit. Retrieved January 1, 2012. Youtube video available here.

Externally generated reports

WHCC Health Innovations. (2011, May 13). The pen is mightier than the dipstick. Retrieved January 1, 2013. Link available here.