3M Drug Delivery Systems has launched 3M Intelligent Control Inhaler, an integrated device that delivers correct doses to patients, whilst providing on-screen instructions for use and feedback to patients and health care providers through an app.

Research has revealed that 334 million people have asthma worldwide and 65 million people suffer with moderate or severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which by 2034, is projected to be world’s third leading cause of death.

The existing treatments and devices to address the ailment are claimed to be sub-optimal and inconsistent, which in turn is leading to an increase in hospital admissions.

3M Drug Delivery Systems global marketing operations manager Louise Righton said: "Poor technique in using an inhaler, coupled with the challenges of getting patients to adhere to their medication protocols, can lead to exacerbations, increased use of health care resources and ultimately, a burden on health care systems.

"By increasing competence and adherence, we can realise better patient outcomes and reduce health care costs."

The device is claimed to offer unique features that minimise scope for patient variability and errors, as well as provide data on use to health care providers and patients.

3M Drug Delivery Systems claimed that the combination of breath actuation with innovative technology to control inspiratory flow rate significantly reduces errors in technique, and leads to a much greater level of consistency of drug delivery between breaths and between patients.

"By increasing competence and adherence, we can realise better patient outcomes and reduce health care costs."

As the device comes with instructions for patients, it gives them confidence to use the inhaler correctly and helps eliminate critical errors in use, as well as minimising the need for resources to train patients in correct inhalation technique, the company claimed.

As it is a fully integrated device, the dose gets registered when the patient correctly inhales medication rather than on actuation of the device, thereby delivering greater accuracy of information for the patient, and cost-savings for health care providers by avoiding unnecessary switches and treatment escalation.

The inhaler makes use of a data management platform to record device usage as well as inspiration profiles to help monitor disease progression, thereby supporting informed treatment decisions.

The device will be developed in partnership with a pharmaceutical company, and is expected to be available for use by 2020.

Image: 3M Intelligent Control Inhaler in various colours. Photo: courtesy of 3M.