HEALTH

Chattem reports four-week 10 percent sales lift

BY Michael Johnsen

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. Chattem on Thursday reported a lift across its over-the-counter brands sales of 10 percent for the four weeks ended Oct. 4, citing data from ACNielsen, excluding the recalled Icy Hot Heat Therapy and the discontinued Icy Hot Pro-Therapy.

“The momentum of our business has continued as expected behind our key brands such as ACT, Gold Bond and Icy Hot,” commented Zan Guerry, chairman and chief executive officer of Chattem.

That 10 percent lift over a four-week period represents an acceleration in the rate of growth for retail sales compared with the 13-week period ended Oct. 4, in which comparable retail sales rose almost 8 percent, Chattem stated.

The year-over-year increase in retail sales was led by ACT, which took over third place in the mouthwash category ahead of Scope based on ACNielsen data for the most recent four- and 13-week periods, which grew by 33 percent and 28 percent over the respective periods. Sales of Gold Bond were up 23 percent and 13 percent, respectively, and Icy Hot 11 percent and 13 percent, respectively.

“In this difficult economic environment, and at a time in which concerns regarding negative consumer sentiment and spending clearly exist, we are pleased with the performance of our brands,” Guerry said. “For fiscal 2009, our exciting lineup of new products is expected to continue our revenue growth, fuel our earnings momentum and result in strong cash flow.”

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HEALTH

ASCP launches chronic constipation education initiative

BY Michael Johnsen

ALEXANDRIA, Va. The American Society of Consultant Pharmacists on Thursday launched a comprehensive continuing medical education initiative for physicians, nurses, pharmacists and other health-care providers about chronic constipation.

Known as E-IMPACCT, Elderly IMProvements and Advances in Chronic Constipation Treatment, the program presents educational activities on evaluating and managing CC, and offers a range of tools to help clinicians in everyday practice.

 “Because of the cascade of complex health issues that can be triggered by chronic constipation, clinicians have expressed their need for targeted education about CC,” stated ASCP executive director and chief executive officer John Feather. “Clinicians need to identify, recognize and differentiate CC and have a clear understanding of the pros and cons of each of the treatments and medications, the side effects and administration and efficacy data.”

“For all clinicians, the management strategies for treating chronic constipation in the elderly should include a combination of patient and caregiver education and communication, dietary modifications, and treatment options,” commented ASCP director of professional and educational affairs Trish D’Antonio Mazzuca. “Educational outcomes from E-IMPACCT will measure changes in clinician knowledge and behavior and improvements in patient care.”

E-IMPACCT provides outcomes-based knowledge through an ongoing, thorough awareness campaign with educational components that will roll out over a 12-month period. Through this initiative, participants are presented with new information and certified continuing education activities, patient cases and guidelines designed to help clinicians better manage CC and improve outcomes in today’s seniors.

Chronic constipation is the most common digestive complaint in the general population. In seniors, roughly 26 percent of men and 34 percent of women complain of constipation. Americans spend approximately $800 million per year on over-the-counter laxatives, the society reported.

The ASCP E-IMPACCT initiative is supported by an educational grant from Sucampo Pharmaceuticals and Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America.

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HEALTH

GlaxoSmithKline wins recommendation to sell Alli in Europe

BY Michael Johnsen

LONDON GlaxoSmithKline won a recommendation from European regulators Thursday that it be allowed to sell its weight loss drug Alli over-the-counter in Europe.

The European Medicines Agency said it had recommended the switch from prescription-only to nonprescription for a 60-milligram dose of alli, the same dose approved for sale OTC in the United States. The European Commission now needs to rubber-stamp the recommendation.

The European Medicines Agency said it had recommended the switch from prescription-only to nonprescription for a 60-milligram dose of alli, the same dose approved for sale OTC in the United States. The European Commission now needs to rubber-stamp the recommendation.

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