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Teen invents STD-detecting condom that changes color

A teenage senior at Bellarmine High School in San Jose has invented a condom that detects sexually transmitted disease — by offering actual visual proof if infection is present.

Image: Adam Arreola (NBC Bay Area)

A teenage senior at Bellarmine High School in San Jose has invented a condom that detects sexually transmitted disease — by offering actual visual proof if infection is present.

Adam Arreola said he worked on the idea of an STD-detecting condom for four years before filing paperwork last month with the United States Patent Office for his new invention. The details of how the condom will work are unclear due to the proprietary issues raised by the patent filing, but Adam insists it will be easy to see visual proof of infection by the partner.

The teen’s father, Tony Arreola, said he was extremely proud of his son who first talked about his idea when he was in the 8th grade. Those early ideas developed into a workable idea and now the teen is taking business meetings about his invention.

“He’s had experience of working with two patent attorneys, and FDA consultant because it is considered a medical device, and learn about the process,” Tony Arreola said. When asked about whether having a condom that reveals whether or not a partner is infected s a good idea,  Adam replied, “I think it would be ideal if it became the norm because there’s no downside to knowing if your partner has an STD, it can help save lives.”

Adam plans to either create a startup to manufacture the condom, or approach condom producers to sell his medical device.

Watch a report on the story from NBC Bay Area in the video below:

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