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Effective Monitoring of Medication Ingestion in TB patients

By Enterprise Technology Review | Tuesday, October 15, 2019

WOT overtakes DOT with the ability to provide real-time medication intake monitored via a mobile app.

Fremont, CA: Tuberculosis (TB), a lung disease, which is contagious and potentially a life-threatening disease, transmitted through the air. It is the second biggest killer globally, although it is preventable, treatable, and curable. People with active tuberculosis should take medication for months to remove the infection. The number of cases of tuberculosis is dramatically increasing, primarily because of the spread of HIV. To monitor treatment adherence to eliminate TB, a new technology involving sensors has been devised.

The new technology assures improved patient care by helping them complete the treatment, thereby eliminating TB. An ingestible sensor allows doctors to monitor tuberculosis patients remotely about the intake of medication. This can help physicians have a follow up with their patients and potentially save lives. A study conducted at the University of California found that a random trial involving a total number of 77 patients in California proved that 93 percent of those using the sensors were taking their daily treatment doses, and the remaining 63 percent did not use the sensor.

The randomized controlled trial used a sensor connected to a paired mobile. The results produced in the trial were superior to directly observed therapy (DOT) involving direct observation of the patient swallowing medicine. The study called Wirelessly Observed Therapy (WOT) consists of a patient swallowing a small, pill-sized sensor composed of minerals and wearing a paired patch on their torso, which transmits medication levels via Bluetooth. Now the patients’ physician can readily track in real-time their medication intake using a phone app.

As a result, the trial demonstrates that WOT shows more accurate records of ingested medicine. The system allows patients to manage their own medication while preserving patient privacy and autonomy. The system also enabled highly targeted treatment support from physicians with permission. WOT is FDA approved and can be accessed by patients with a prescription from a physician and downloadable app.

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