"A New Pill With A Digital Tracker Can Tell Your Doctor If You Swallow It" - Amanda MacMillan
The Food and Drug Administration issued a first-of-its-kind approval on Monday, approving the first drug in the United States with a digital ingestion tracking system. The new pill, called Abilify MyCite, contains an ingestible sensor that can help patients, doctors, and caregivers keep track of whether they are taking their medication as directed. The pill is approved for the treatment of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and as an add-on treatment for depression in adults. Failing to stick to a regular medication regimen is a common problem, particularly for people with serious mental health issues, said Dolores Malaspinia, MD, MS, MSPH, senior faculty of psychiatry, genetics and genomic sciences, neuroscience, and director of the psychosis program at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. “Many of these people do not recognize that they have a disorder, or they don’t like the side effects of medication, or they stop taking it once they feel better,” she said. “And those things would not really be addressed by a pill with a sensor,” she added. But people with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder can also have impaired executive functions, including short-term memory, and may forget to take—or forget if they’ve taken—their medication for the day. “For those reasons, a device like this could indeed be very helpful, and I think it should be applauded,” Dr. Malaspina said.
- Dolores Malaspina, MD, MS, MSPH, Senior Faculty, Psychiatry, Genetics and Genomic Sciences, Neuroscience, Director, Psychosis Program, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai