ShareThis Page
Health

FDA approves first pill with tracking device

Ben Schmitt
| Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017, 7:54 a.m.
This Oct. 14, 2015, file photo, shows the U.S. Food & Drug Administration campus in Silver Spring, Md. On Monday, Nov. 13, 2017, the FDA approved the first drug in the United States with a digital ingestion tracking system, in an unprecedented move to ensure that patients with mental illness take the medicine prescribed for them. The drug Abilify MyCite was developed by Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)
This Oct. 14, 2015, file photo, shows the U.S. Food & Drug Administration campus in Silver Spring, Md. On Monday, Nov. 13, 2017, the FDA approved the first drug in the United States with a digital ingestion tracking system, in an unprecedented move to ensure that patients with mental illness take the medicine prescribed for them. The drug Abilify MyCite was developed by Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)
Getty Images

Did you take your pill today? Can't remember?

Coming soon, your doctor may be able to help you monitor medication ingestion with a digital tracking device.

On Monday, the Food and Drug Administration approved the first digital pill, or medication with a sensor.

Japanese drug maker Otsuka Pharmaceutical won the approval for an antipsychotic medication called Ability, prescribed to adults for bipolar disorder, schizophrenia mania and some forms of depression.

“The system works by sending a message from the pill's sensor to a wearable patch,” the FDA said in a news release . “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 permit their caregivers and physician to access the information through a web-based portal.”

Patients using the drug can sign consent forms allowing their doctors and up to four other people to receive and monitor electronic data showing when the pills are ingested.

“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.”

Ben Schmitt is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 412-320-7991, bschmitt@tribweb.com or via Twitter @Bencschmitt.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me