3D Printed Epilepsy Drug Now Available in the US

The porous pill is meant to rapidly disintegrate with just a sip of liquid.

3D-printed Spritam (levetiracetam) is now available in the US as an adjunctive therapy for the treatment of partial onset seizures, myoclonic seizures, and primary generalized tonic-clonic seizures in adults and children with epilepsy.

The drug, manufactured by Aprecia Pharmaceuticals, is the first 3D-printed treatment to be approved by the FDA, and is meant to ease administration of medication, especially for those who may have trouble swallowing pills.

The pill is formulated using Aprecia’s proprietary ZipDose technology that allows for the creation of rapidly disintegrating formulations of medication. Spritam is available in 4 unit-dose strengths, including 250 mg, 500 mg, 750 mg, and 1000 mg.

Independent surveys have indicated that up to 40 to 50% of US adults, both with and without epilepsy, have had trouble swallowing pills, leading some patients to skip doses. In patients with epilepsy, up to 45% reported having a seizure after missing a dose of medication.

The most common side effects of Spritam include sleepiness, weakness, dizziness, aggressive behavior, nasal congestion, decreased appetite, irritability, and infection. Spritam may also cause suicidal thoughts and actions, and severe skin rash.