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New Medical Tech Creates a Digital Pill You Can Swallow

Updated on September 22, 2015
Image from Daily Mail
Image from Daily Mail | Source

Otsuka Pharmaceuticals from Japan and Proteus Digital Health from the US recently announced their newest product in the market, a digital pill that helps monitor a patient's health.

While the idea may seem strange to many, this new medical technology has actually been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), according to reports in September 2015. Pretty soon, we may be seeing this electronic medication available on our drug store shelves.

In a nutshell, the digital pill, experimentally embedded in the drug Abilify, has a small sensor that can be dissolved in the body. When a patient swallows his meds, and the pill reaches the stomach, a body patch on the patient detects it. This special body patch then sends signals to a computer or mobile phone to inform the patient or the doctor that the pill has been taken on time.

For years, Proteus has developed their digital patches to be used for patients with other conditions. It is only now that the company has decided to pair their technology with a pharmaceutical firm to enhance its application even more.

Sample of the Proteus Digital Patch Image from Proteus
Sample of the Proteus Digital Patch Image from Proteus

Why choose Abilify, among all other drugs that can be tested? Abilify is said to be the number one drug in the market today for treating bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and other symptoms of Alzheimer's disease. According to Otsuka Pharmaceuticals and Proteus Digital Health, one of the challenges doctors face is that their patients tend to forget to take their medicines at the prescribed time.

Through this digital pill, doctors can remotely monitor the conditions of their patients, securely and electronically. Health data such as blood pressure, body temp, and others can also be read by the doctors even when their patients are away.

What do you think, will this be a type of medicine that you are willing to take? Let me know in the comments.


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