The fever of 3D technology is soaring high these days and the pharmaceutical industry is not lagging behind to make use of this groundbreaking technology.
Aprecia Pharmaceuticals has become the first medicine brand in the world to tap in the huge potential of 3D technology by introducing its 3D printed drug, Spritam. After getting the required approval from the US FDA, the drug is now available to the consumers in the United States.
The successful launch of Spritam is expected to boost the research and development of other 3D printed drugs as well. While several other pharmaceutical companies are pushing hard to bring out their own products using the pioneering 3D technology, Spritam has successfully negotiated the research, clinical trial and approval stages to become the first ever prescription medicine to come out of 3D printers in a pharmaceutical lab.
Spritam is a form of levetiracetam, which is intended for the treatment of epilepsy. It is likely to make a huge difference in the lives of those who are suffering from seizures. Swallowing pills can be difficult for some patients, especially the children and the elderly people. Dysphagia, or difficulty in swallowing pills, is quite common among the patients suffering from epilepsy. The highlight of Spritam lies in its ability to instantaneously dissolve in water, thus making it really easy for the epilepsy patients to consume the medicine without any hiccups.
3D printed medicines are in the limelight mainly due to their instantly dissoluble quality. Such tablets are produced using a process called powderbed inkjet printing, where the elements are assembled on a layer-by-layer basis. Thin layers of powdered medication are placed on top of one another and patterns of liquid droplets are printed onto selected regions to bond the materials together.
Such instantly dissoluble medicines not only put an end to the painful swallowing attempts that most of the epilepsy patients struggle with, but the technology could also help in producing individualized dosage or custom combinations of drugs for the diseases that require a patient-friendly form of medication.