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The Worldwide Over-the-Counter (OTC) Drug Market

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Over-the-Counter (OTC) drugs are non-prescription drugs sold to consumers by convenience and grocery stores. These drugs include pain relievers, cough and cold remedies, sleeping aids, antifungals, and other products approved for use as a self-medication product. There has been a particular focus in the pharmaceutical industry on OTC drugs, and in several market research reports over the past decade, has covered the strategies pharmaceutical companies are using in the OTC market. This report, The Worldwide Over the Counter (OTC) Drug Market has market sizes and forecasts in five general segments:


Allergy, Cough, Cold, Flu Remedies

Gastrointestinal Remedies


Others, including

Smoking Cessation Products

Sleep Aids

Hair Growth Remedies

Diet Aids

Revenues for each segment were generated using dollar and unit sales for key products in each segment and region. The report provides examples of OTC drugs in each general region, segmented as follows:

Asia Pacific and Africa


North America

South America

Issues and trends explored in this study include:

Mergers and Acquisitions

Distribution and Safety Issues

Consumer Advertising and Promotion


World Health and Life Expectancy Trends

Prescription vs. OTC Industry

Rx-to-OTC Switch Industry

Economic Trends

Health Insurance Issues and Trends

Consumer Issues and Trends

Regulatory Environment

Access to Medicine

The report includes incidence of conditions which are often treated with OTC medicines, health statistics related to the industry, birth rates, world population, populations by region and issues affecting the market as a whole. Information is presented as a worldwide overview, with special emphasis on the U.S., Japan, Germany, and other key markets. The market segments provide an overview of demographics, information about products available in each region, market estimates and forecasts. Additionally, a competitive analysis of leading providers and profiles of providers is covered. In-depth profiles are included for the following companies:

Bayer Consumer Health

Boehringer Ingelheim


McNeil Consumer (Johnson & Johnson)


Novartis Pharmaceuticals

Pfizer/Wyeth Consumer

Procter & Gamble

Reckitt Benckiser


Taisho Pharmaceutical


The information for this report was gathered using both primary and secondary research including comprehensive research of secondary sources such as company literature, databases, investment reports, and medical and business journals. Telephone interviews and email correspondence were the primary method of gathering information. For the purpose of this study, conducted interviews with more than 100 key industry officials, consultants, health care providers, and government personnel. These sources were the primary basis in gathering information specifically relating to revenue and market share data presented in this report. Additional interviews were completed with relevant company representatives including marketing directors, division managers, and product representatives.

All market data pertains to the world market at the manufacturers’ level. The base year for data was 2009. Historical data was provided for the years 2007 and 2008, with forecast data provided for 2010 through 2014. Compound annual growth rates (CAGRs) are provided for the 2007-2009 and 2009-2014 periods for each region and/or segment covered. Competitive analysis is provided for the year 2009. The forecasted market analysis for 2009-2014 was largely based on demographic trends, new developments, and global expansion.

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Kylie Garcia

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