Implantable Polymeric Drug Delivery Devices: Classification, Manufacture, Materials, and Clinical Applications
School of Pharmacy, Queen’s University Belfast, 97 Lisburn Road, Belfast BT9 7BL, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Polymers 2018, 10(12), 1379; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym10121379
Received: 8 November 2018 / Accepted: 10 December 2018 / Published: 12 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymer-Based Systems for Controlled Release and Targeting of Drugs)
The oral route is a popular and convenient means of drug delivery. However, despite its advantages, it also has challenges. Many drugs are not suitable for oral delivery due to: first pass metabolism; less than ideal properties; and side-effects of treatment. Additionally, oral delivery relies heavily on patient compliance. Implantable drug delivery devices are an alternative system that can achieve effective delivery with lower drug concentrations, and as a result, minimise side-effects whilst increasing patient compliance. This article gives an overview of classification of these drug delivery devices; the mechanism of drug release; the materials used for manufacture; the various methods of manufacture; and examples of clinical applications of implantable drug delivery devices.