Ultrasound and transdermal drug delivery

Drug Discov Today. 2004 Aug 1;9(15):670-6. doi: 10.1016/S1359-6446(04)03170-8.


Transdermal drug delivery offers an attractive alternative to the conventional drug delivery methods of oral administration and injection. However, the stratum corneum acts as a barrier that limits the penetration of substances through the skin. Application of ultrasound to the skin increases its permeability (sonophoresis) and enables the delivery of various substances into and through the skin. This review presents the main findings in the field of sonophoresis, namely transdermal drug delivery and transdermal monitoring. Particular attention is paid to proposed enhancement mechanisms and future trends in the field of cutaneous vaccination and gene delivery.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Cutaneous*
  • Animals
  • Drug Delivery Systems / methods*
  • Humans
  • Permeability
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations / administration & dosage*
  • Skin / diagnostic imaging*
  • Skin Absorption
  • Ultrasonography


  • Pharmaceutical Preparations