Identify Pills with NIH’s New Web Tool – The Chart
Poison control centers receive over a million calls per year for drugs that need to be identified. And maybe you’ve been in situations where the pills seem to be moving away from their labeled bottles, and you don’t know what they are.
Now, the National Institutes of Health are developing a way to quickly identify drugs based on how they look. Casemate, in its beta testing phase, gives possibilities for your mystery pill based on its shape, color, size, footprint and “score” (how many pieces it could be divided based on these small lines).
There’s also advanced search so you can go the other way around – search for a drug and see what it’s supposed to look like. At this early stage, however, there are a lot of ads that don’t have images. Pillbox has 10,562 records, but only 912 currently have images, the website says. The National Library of Medicine and the Food and Drug Administration are working to photograph more pills.
The pill box has more uses than identifying pills, said David Hale, developer of the NIH web tool. He said it has been used to teach pharmacy students, to list inactive ingredients in pills that people might be sensitive or allergic to, and to help law enforcement.
Hale announced this week at the Gov 2.0 summit that new data is now available on Pillbox and also gives access to technology developers to innovate in the use of data. Pharmaceutical companies have been asked to send in samples of their drugs so that more images can be placed in the system.
This tool is still under development and is not intended for clinical use, warns the NIH.
Hale said Pillbox was issued with the disclaimer to ensure “everyone is involved in the conversation and all stakeholders validate the process in an open and transparent manner.”
Learn more about how it was created from Mashable. It is intended for emergency responders, poison control centers, healthcare professionals and everyone else.
Call the National Poison Hotline at 1-800-222-1222 if you suspect a poison emergency.