The FDA approves pill able to detect if patients have ingested medication

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved, Abilify MyCite, the first drug in the US with a digital ingestion tracking system

Abilify MyCite (aripiprazole tablets) has an ingestible sensor embedded in the pill, which records that medication has been taken.

The product is approved for the treatment of schizophrenia, acute treatment of manic and mixed episodes associated with bipolar I disorder and for use as an add-on treatment for depression in adults.

The system works by sending a message from the pill’s sensor to a wearable patch. The patch transmits the information to a mobile application so that patients can track the ingestion of the medication on their smart phone.

Patients can also allow their prescribing doctor to monitor the data through a web-based portal.

“Being able to track ingestion of medications prescribed for mental illness may be useful for some patients,” said Dr Mitchell Mathis, Director of the Division of Psychiatry Products in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.

“The FDA supports the development and use of new technology in prescription drugs and is committed to working with companies to understand how technology might benefit patients and prescribers.”

Experts hope it could improve medication compliance, although Abilify MyCite states this has not been proven for their product.

Abilify MyCite should not be used to track drug ingestion in real-time or during an emergency because detection may be delayed or may not occur.

Abilify was first approved by the FDA in 2002 to treat schizophrenia. The ingestible sensor used in Abilify MyCite was first permitted for marketing by the FDA, in 2012.

Abilify MyCite is developed by Otsuka Pharmaceutical. The sensor technology and patch are made by Proteus Digital Health.

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