Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started
My Medicine

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Children's Vaccines Health Center

Font Size

Could Shots Become a Thing of the Past?


Conventional inhalers deliver varied amounts of medication to the large airways of the lungs. The new device, though, can deliver precise doses of tiny liquid particles into the small airways -- a much more efficient method.

According to Igor Gonda, PhD, a researcher at Aradigm Corp. in Hayward, Calif., the device monitors how a patient is inhaling, and when the breaths are slow and controlled, it emits a green light to signal that the drug is about to be administered. A piston pushes the drug from its blister pack into the airstream, where it is inhaled. The patient holds his breath for a few seconds to allow the drug to concentrate in the lungs.

Gorda says that the device could be used in treating diabetes, cystic fibrosis, or chronic pain, and may even play a role in delivering gene therapy. He adds that use in asthma and other lung disorders is also possible.

Another researcher here suggests that implantation of a dime-sized microchip may make needles a thing of the past. The chip, when placed under the skin, would contain hundreds of mini-reservoirs capable of dispensing medications on demand, says John Santini Jr., PhD, president of MicroCHIPS Inc. of Waltham, Mass.

Santini and colleagues from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have tested the chips in the laboratory and are planning to test them in animals soon. He said the devices could deliver drugs used to control chronic pain, in cancer therapy, in hormone therapy, and for other conditions.

"This is very intriguing work," says Saltzman, "but it is very preliminary."

1 | 2

Today on WebMD

Baby getting vaccinated
Is there a link? Get the facts.
syringes and graph illustration
Get a customized vaccine schedule.
baby getting a vaccine
Know the benefits and the risk
nurse holding syringe in front of girl
Should your child have it?

What To Know About The HPV Vaccine
24 Kid Illnesses Parents Should Know
Nausea and Vomiting Remedies Slideshow
Managing Immunization Schedules For Kids

Doctor administering vaccine to toddler
gloved hand holding syringe
infant receiving injection

WebMD Special Sections