When Sabine Hairabedian of Manhasset was bedridden after a double mastectomy, the engineer in her kept thinking even though she couldn’t use her arms.
“It’s a pretty major surgery, and I was sent home less than 24 hours after the surgery, so I was very frail,” Hairabedian said. “Your body is in shock. It’s like you’ve been rolled over by a truck. I was laying in my bed and I couldn’t use my arms. I was laying on my bed and had to have someone lift me up, bring me down.”
Now, Hairabedian has taken what she experienced and created a product for those in similar situations who want to keep their independence.
Hairabedian founded Abely, a startup company based in Nassau County, about a year and a half ago and has since developed the Abelift, a $499 device used on top of the existing mattress to let users move from flat to sitting at 90 degrees or anywhere in between without the aid of a partner or caregiver.
“It’s bringing a new level of comfort to your own bed,” Hairabedian said. “There are three words I emphasize — mobility, independence and dignity — because what’s really key is the person can stay in his or her own bed with their life partner. If someone is at the end of their life and wants to remain at home, instead of being in a hospital bed in the den, they can actually be in their own bed at a time when they’re so vulnerable and keep their dignity.”
Hospital-grade adjustable beds average about $1,000 for a twin-size model and full-size or larger options average about $1,400 or more.
The device is also portable, Hairabedian said, and comes with a fitted sheet for the memory foam topper that covers the lift device.
The Abelift weighs about 20 pounds and requires no installation.
Hairabedian said the product is ideal for those recovering from surgery, those who want to continue to age in their own home and new mothers who are nursing as well as those suffering from acid reflux or congestion.
“You can recline in your bed while watching a movie or sleep at an incline for those with acid reflux or other medical conditions,” Hairabedian said.