Updated: Sep 25, 2020
Author: Kopal Kumar
From: Saint Louis, Missouri
Asthma. It’s a name we’ve all heard before. As the most prevalent chronic illness on our planet, it’s not a surprise that over 339 million people are living with asthma currently. However, something that is extremely surprising is the fact that 87% of asthma patients do not use their inhalers correctly, reducing the amount of medication that reaches their lungs. Incorrect use of inhalers has been linked to poor asthma control and frequent visits to the emergency department, both of which are not very good for the patient.
To solve this problem, the FDA approved a product that would allow the patient to use the inhaler correctly at all times. This product is called CapMedic and was created by Cognita Labs in Santa Ana, California. The product sits atop the inhaler and guides the user on how to properly use their inhaler. It uses sensors to measure everything the patient is doing and TALK them through the proper way to use the inhaler so that they can build the correct habits for when they need their inhaler in an emergency. As soon as you lift your inhaler and start to use it, the CapMedic will come to life and start to guide you. The reusable and rechargeable caps emit visual, audio and haptic signals that lets the patient know when their inhaler has been shaken enough and is fully upright, and other factors that need to be taken into consideration when obtaining a full dose of medication.
Besides being an interactive guide, the CapMedic also pairs with an app to be able to provide clinical advice. Using bluetooth, the app connects to the spirometer and stores the readings. It allows patients to manage their asthma but to also send data to their personal care physicians. Other functions of the app include Visualize and track medication. The website also conveys that the app will give you tips on correct use for all types of inhalers and allow you to set medication reminders on both the app and the device.
But that’s not all because these caps just keep getting better. They are able to be used on almost every type of inhaler and are super easy to work with. The cap is easily removable so you can replace an empty inhaler or even other brands as prescribed. It has also been designed to work with both rescue inhalers like albuterol and control medications like corticosteroids and combination inhalers.
Pilot tested in Houston at Texas Children’s Hospital and Ben Taub Hospital, the cap is currently being tested at Ventura County Medical Center, in Los Angeles. The tests are demonstrating whether the use of CapMedic leads to improved inhaler use.
The cap is currency priced at $99 and is available only through a prescription. The cap also comes with a free six month subscription to the app. After the six months are up, the user can renew their subscription for $49. There are also other plans available for various insurance companies who wish to buy them for their patients.
Like other products, this product doesn’t work for everyone. But it may make a large impact on the numbers of people who don’t use their inhaler correctly. It might strengthen asthma control and decrease the amount of ER visits among asthma patients, even by a little bit.
Author: Kopal Kumar
Hi I’m Kopal! I’m a sophomore in highschool from Stl, MO. In my free time, I love to play tennis and watch criminal minds!
Al-Jahdali, H., Ahmed, A., Al-Harbi, A., Khan, M., Baharoon, S., Salih, S. B., . . . Al-Muhsen, S. (2013). Improper inhaler technique is associated with poor asthma control and frequent emergency department visits. Allergy, Asthma & Clinical Immunology, 9(1). doi:10.1186/1710-1492-9-8
Berg, J., Arundhati Parmar | 12:55 pm, S., Stephanie Baum | 2:07 pm, S., Alaric DeArment | 11:21 am, S., & Elise Reuter | 2:23 pm, S. (2020, January 23). FDA clears smart inhaler cap from Cognita Labs. Retrieved September 23, 2020, from https://medcitynews.com/2020/01/fda-clears-smart-inhaler-cap-from-cognita-labs/?rf=1
Product - CapMedic - Simplifying Inhalers For Correct And Regular Use. (2020, April 29). Retrieved September 23, 2020, from https://capmedicinhaler.com/product/