Lab Experiment

My Potassium Sensor

A project to develop a home test kit to empower patients to monitor blood potassium levels

Blood Sample


The potassium test kit project

We are an interdisciplinary team of scientists and clinicians from the University of Cambridge and Addenbrooke’s Hospital, developing a device for home testing of blood potassium levels.


Specific groups of patients are at risk from abnormal potassium levels, which can in extreme cases be fatal. The idea for this device originated from patients themselves, via the Cambridge Patient-Led Research Hub. The device will allow patients can carers (or health care professionals) to monitor their blood potassium (K) levels, enabling them to participate in their own management, and ultimately increase both patient safety and quality of life.

The proposed kit will consist of a small handheld device, similar to a glucometer used by people with diabetes, coupled with single use, disposable sensors to measure potassium levels from a small drop of blood from a finger-prick.


Who can benefit from the kit?

  • Anyone with abnormally high K (hyperkalemia; above 5.5 mmol/L) levels

    • Patients on dialysis

    • Other kidney patients

    • People with familial hyperkalemic periodic paralysis (FHPP)

    • Those who take certain commonly-prescribed drugs:

      • medication for high blood pressure (ACE inhibitors, angiotensin receptor or mineralocorticoid receptor blockers)

      • some antibiotics, eg trimethoprim

      • calcineurin inhibitors (transplant recipients)

  • Anyone with abnormally low K (hypokalemia; below 3.3 mmol/L) levels

    • Patients with genetic kidney disorders such as Gitelman or Bartter Syndromes

    • Those who take certain commonly-prescribed drugs: 

      • diuretics

      • certain anticancer drugs

      • antivirals


Pipetting Samples and Test Tube

Get involved

Your help will support our work and help bring this technology to patients

  • Fill questionnaire

    • We are currently gathering opinions from both potential users and healthcare providers.

    • This will help us understand your needs and to develop the best kit.

    • Click here to fill in a short (5 minute) questionnaire.

  • Express interest

    • If you think you would benefit from measuring your potassium using this kit, or know somebody who might, we would like to hear from you! 

    • Please fill your details below so we can email you with updates on development.

  • Get involved

    • If you feel passionate about bringing a potassium home testing kit to patients, please contact us to find out how you can get involved.
  • Donate

    • So far we have received funding from Kidney Research UK, Addenbrooke's Charitable Trust and the Addenbrooke's Kidney Patients' Association for early technology development and proof-of-concept.

    • Any donations will enable us to continue development and bring this kit to patients. Please email us to discuss.



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