3D-printed polypill covers all your medication for the entire day | The Optimist Daily
Today’s Solutions: June 22, 2024

Keeping track of many medicines and dosages might make it difficult to remember to take medication. However, a new invention in healthcare could provide a remedy. Researchers at the University of Nottingham pioneered the notion of 3D-printed “polypills,” which aim to simplify drug regimens and improve patient care.

Streamlining medication management

In a study published in Materials Today Advances, a group of industrial engineers and pharmacists revealed their breakthrough in tailored medicine. They used Multi-Material InkJet 3D Printing to create edible pills with highly customizable medication doses and release times. These polypills have the potential to change drug administration by lowering the risk of errors and increasing patient adherence.

Assistant Professor Yinfeng He, the research lead, describes this achievement as “an exciting step” toward tailored medical care. With administration errors accounting for up to one-third of prescription errors in US households, there is an obvious need for creative solutions.

Pioneering 3D-printed polypills

The procedure begins with the creation of a specific ink that, when exposed to UV light, generates water-soluble structures. When combined with varied amounts of aspirin, the ink is 3D-printed into customizable geometric designs. These patterns control the tablet’s surface area, inner structure, release rate, and dosage, resulting in accurate medicine distribution.

“The ongoing research aims to refine these aspects, enhancing the feasibility of [3D printing] for widespread application,” says the study’s co-author, Engineering professor Ricky Wildman. The team’s initial studies with aspirin show the possibility of adding more medications into future polypill designs.

Advancing personalized medicine

This technology has far-reaching ramifications beyond streamlining medication scheduling. Polypills, which adapt drug release profiles to individual patient demands, could improve treatment outcomes for a variety of disorders. Pharmacy professor and study co-author Felicity Rose underlines the value of individualized therapy in resolving drug adherence issues.

“The future of prescribed medication lies in a personalized approach,” Rose says. With almost half of UK citizens struggling to stick to their prescription regimes, the invention of polypills represents a possible answer. Patients can benefit from increased convenience and better treatment adherence when numerous drugs are combined into a single tablet.

As research into 3D-printed polypills advances, the potential for tailored medicine to transform healthcare becomes more apparent. With continued research into various materials and prescription drugs, this revolutionary technology shows potential for a wide range of patients.

To summarize, the era of 3D-printed polypills marks a tremendous advancement in medicine administration. Researchers are paving the path for a future in which complex pharmaceutical regimens are simplified and patient outcomes are improved by merging cutting-edge technology with personalized healthcare.

Source study: Materials Today Advances—Enabling high-fidelity personalised pharmaceutical tablets through multimaterial inkjet 3D printing with a water-soluble excipient

 

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