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Tue Nov 14, 2017, 08:02 AM

First Digital Pill Approved to Worries About Biomedical 'Big Brother'

Source: New York Times




By PAM BELLUCKNOV. 13, 2017

For the first time, the Food and Drug Administration has approved a digital pill — a medication embedded with a sensor that can tell doctors whether, and when, patients take their medicine.

The approval, announced late on Monday, marks a significant advance in the growing field of digital devices designed to monitor medicine-taking and to address the expensive, longstanding problem that millions of patients do not take drugs as prescribed.

Experts estimate that so-called nonadherence or noncompliance to medication costs about $100 billion a year, much of it because patients get sicker and need additional treatment or hospitalization.

“When patients don’t adhere to lifestyle or medications that are prescribed for them, there are really substantive consequences that are bad for the patient and very costly,” said Dr. William Shrank, chief medical officer of the health plan division at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.




Read more: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/13/health/digital-pill-fda.html

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Reply First Digital Pill Approved to Worries About Biomedical 'Big Brother' (Original post)
DonViejo Tuesday OP
get the red out Tuesday #1
Grins Tuesday #2
csziggy Tuesday #3
Big Blue Marble Tuesday #4
csziggy Tuesday #5
meadowlander Tuesday #6

Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 08:53 AM

1. NO!

Just no.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 11:59 AM

2. Interesting,,,

Story on, I think, NBC, maybe two years ago.

An MD/researcher predicting that certain people would soon be able to ingest a sensor the size of a grain of sand with their morning coffee/breakfast that would react to enzyme changes in the body. Once alerted, the sensor would bluetooth a flag to your cell phone that would activate a test message saying: "You're about to have a heart attack. Call your doctor!"

Maybe a days notice. And an app on your phone would also intercept that alert and send a 2nd text to your doctor or a relative to alert them.

If Dr. Shrank is correct and it will save some of that $100-Billion, the next issue may be "Why didn't they take the medication; and if it was due to the cost of the med - whadareya going to do about it?"

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 12:01 PM

3. That could help a lot of people

While the personal privacy invasion is a serious concern, sometimes it may be needed.

An example of a situation that would greatly alleved by the use of this device/medication:
https://www.democraticunderground.com/10029811017

That is a DUer whose family dynamics would be greatly improved with the use of this device. The son is a danger to his family, himself, and his community when he does not take his medications. When he does take them he is a better person.

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Response to csziggy (Reply #3)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 12:41 PM

4. It is a bridge too far

to invade the privacy of your body and insert internal controls to force people to take chemical
substances into their body. The implications of this are beyond profound.

Be very careful what you wish for....

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Response to Big Blue Marble (Reply #4)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 04:17 PM

5. So for the case I linked to it would be better to let the patient get out of conrol

And maybe harm himself and others? End up in jail? I suspect that the mother who posted the story would very much prefer that her son's medical needs be monitored rather than have things get out of control the way she describes has been happening.

As someone who has increasing numbers of artificial body parts I am for mechanical interventions that will help people lead better lives.

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Response to Big Blue Marble (Reply #4)

Tue Nov 14, 2017, 05:16 PM

6. It's not a question of "wishing". Sometimes there are no good options.

I know two schizophrenics who semi-frequently go off their meds because they hate the side effects (feeling foggy all the time, gaining weight, etc.) But when they are off their meds they are a danger to themselves and potentially others. One of them is a big fan of impromptu home renovations when he's off his meds and once demolished a wall with a sledgehammer while his infant daughter was in a crib nearby.

If the choice is between a chemical restraint and an otherwise "normal" life and being fully institutionalised, I think most people in their rational minds would go for the chemical restraint.

I wouldn't support it's general use, but I wouldn't have an issue, necessarily, with using something like this to ensure that court-ordered medical treatment is complied with where the only alternatives are incarceration or forced medical treatment using a more invasive method.

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