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  • Medication Delivery with your Smartphone (Looking for feedback)

    Discussion in 'The main mechanical design forum' started by InteMed, Sep 4, 2014.

    1. InteMed

      InteMed Member

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      Hello,
      I am developing some expansion devices for the Smartphone. One is a pill dispenser and can be veiwed via the following YouTube link:



      The others can be veiwed on the following web pages. The devices are rough working prototypes at this point and I am looking to license the technology. But input from this forum would be great.

      www.intemed.net
      or
      www.intevape.net

      Thanks,
      Steve
       
      Last edited by a moderator: Jun 17, 2016
    2.  
    3. Lochnagar

      Lochnagar Well-Known Member

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      Hi Steve,

      What you have done looks nice - but I am sorry I don't agree with your first statement that hundreds of thousands of people die each year because we forget to take our pills - and secondly it just is not necessary - but let me explain.

      In "round numbers" - the people that generally need lots of pills are the elderly - and there is heck of a lot of them - if not most of them who haven't got a smart phone - so that renders your device useless for a start. Additionally, when the elderly need pills - they tend to need more than 2 different types of pills - and whilst you might be able to squeeze an extra 1 or maybe 2 pill dispensers to the phone - that still will not be enough to satisfy the majority of the elderly folks who need pills by the "bucket load" - as they need them several times per day. Then there is the issue that old folks tend not to like new technology - they tend to shy away from it.

      So what about the rest of the population - (excluding the elderly) - well, I have never heard of a younger person who is so absent minded - they forget to take their pills. Absent mindedness is something that is associated with the elderly - not the younger population.

      And one final thought - is that we should be trying to avoid having to take pills in the first place - as opposed to getting into a culture of taking pills - we should be trying to live more active lives - so that we don't get the 100 and 1 problems that come about by being inactive and leading unhealthy lifestyles. It is worth looking at some video footage of people taken in the early 1900's - the people are thin, they are taking a bike to work - and compare that with the obese people you see going around today - sitting in a food hall texting their mates. I think the smart phone might be the problem - not the solution:)

      So I guess from my perspective - it is dead in the water.

      Hope this helps.
       
    4. Erich

      Erich Well-Known Member

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      Second comment on your vapor delivery device.

      You are designing a drug delivery device. That means a medical device. These require FDA approvals. Your entire developement effort must follow approved methods and be documented six ways to Sunday. If you have not yet done it, consult with a Regulatory Affairs specialist.
      It will be the best money you can spend. Do it early before you learn that a bunch of work must be redone or worse, you get in hot water with the FDA.
       
    5. InteMed

      InteMed Member

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      Lochnager,
      I appreciate your prospective. However there is a lot of data to dispute your thoughts. First, in the US alone estimates are that almost 65% of adults take regular medications. And a large portion of the people taking 1 to 3 pills per day are between 19 and 54 years of age. Although this may be due to the points at the end of your response, it is still a fact. In addition there are a number of studies that estimate some 30% to 50% of all people taking medication are not complient. So it’s not just the elderly that are forgetting to take their pills.
      Besides the large portion of the world’s population that take regular medications, there is a very good chance that the group between 19 and 54 are using Smartphone’s. Today there are 1.75 billion Smartphone’s in use and that number is growing by the hundreds of millions every year.
      Regarding the quantity of pills delivered, the device shown in the video is a prototype produced with commercially available components. If built with customized components we estimate between 4 and 6 pill cartridges based on the phone size.
      As far as the costs of Medication Non-Compliance and Counterfeit medicines in both dollars and lives, please read the following:
      http://www.theatlantic.com/health/a...noncompliance-and-what-to-do-about-it/262222/
      http://www.amednews.com/article/20130701/profession/130709988/9/
      http://www.bizjournals.com/triangle/blog/2013/07/medication-non-adherence-costs-290b.html
      http://www.ahdbonline.com/issues/20...lth-and-economic-effects-of-counterfeit-drugs
      http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/money/industries/health/drugs/story/2011-10-09/cnbc-drugs/50690880/1
      There are at least 52 Medical Papers written on the subject and a large number of studies all indicated hundreds of billions in financial costs and hundreds of thousands of lives.
      We feel our device offers a solution to these issues for a large portion of the population.

      Steve
       
    6. Lochnagar

      Lochnagar Well-Known Member

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      Hi Steve,

      That is a very interesting - or should I say a very alarming comment you have made about the number of pills your fellow Americans are having to take every day.

      "almost 65% of adults take regular medications and a large portion of the people taking 1 to 3 pills per day are between 19 and 54 years of age"

      I am an engineer - not a doctor - but I am seriously alarmed at what appears to me to be over prescription of pills in America - especially as you say they are taking them every day. I wonder if this is not a means by the medical profession of bolstering the drug companies profits - because I am in the same age group you have defined above (but in the UK) - and I can't think of anyone who takes regular medication.

      So my suggestion - would be for you to use your abilities to design something to make people healthier in America - so that they are not reliant on pills every day.

      Just my thoughts.
       
    7. InteMed

      InteMed Member

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      Lochnagar,
      I agree with your general position. But I am just an engineer as well and changing a cultural nom is beyond my pay grade.
      Steve
       
    8. K.I.S.S.

      K.I.S.S. Well-Known Member

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      Hi InteMed (and Lochnagar),

      I have to say that I agree with Lochnagars' sentiments regarding the over prescription culture - I'm also from the UK and of the age that you only went to see the doctor if you were almost dead. And if you weren't almost dead, the doctor would boot you out of the room for wasting their time... and don't do yourself the disservice of saying that you're just a engineer.
      But if you're looking to make a dispensing device of this nature, can I suggest that it is coupled with all of the sensory information that modern smartphones are capable of assimilating? For example, heart rates can be monitored, even on board the phone - if outside of your doctors prescribed parameters, then medication is temporarily denied. Or for movement impaired patients, gyroscopically measured tests may be pertinent. For Geriatric conditions, Haptic responses may play a important role.
      In essence, I'm saying that it may be possible to actually reduce medication for certain individuals based upon real time pertinent condition monitoring.
      Good luck with selling that one to the pharmaceutical companies though...
       
    9. InteMed

      InteMed Member

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      K.I.S.S.,
      I like the thoughts and we have already mapped out an integration with wearable sensors........
       
    10. InteMed

      InteMed Member

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      Any other thoughts. How about what do you think about a pill dispenser attached to your Smartphone. The prototype in the video was produced with commercial components. In production it could be much thinner and smaller and the transparent parts would not be.
       
    11. K.I.S.S.

      K.I.S.S. Well-Known Member

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      Hi Intemed,

      I think that my gut feeling would be that you won't get a large take up on this product.
      If, as you state, there are many millions of smart phone owners out there who are reliant upon daily (and presumably vital) self administered medication, then I would be more inclined to set up a subscription based App that would allow their personal usage and requirements to be sent to them on the required basis - daily, three times per day etc., either through a text message or email.
      At least in this way you would also cover the non smart phone owners.

      And have you given a lot of thought to the bewilderingly large variety of shapes and sizes of tablets and capsules on the market?
      I was reluctantly forced to take one such pill a few weeks ago, and I have to say that I'm glad it wasn't a suppository...

      I think that at heart, human beings in general are reluctant to disclose any physical weakness, certainly the younger ones (although past a certain age, I think it becomes something of a badge of honour amongst certain individuals when they compare medications...)
      But in general, I don't think that people will be especially predisposed towards advertising their medical needs in public.
      I hope you don't think I'm being unduly negative, it's just my personal assessment of the merits of the device.

      K.I.S.S.
       

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