HEALTH

Migraine may be next switch

BY Michael Johnsen

The next big Rx-to-OTC switch opportunity in 2017 could be migraine treatments.

(To view the full Category Review, click here.)

“They did switch Imitrex [in Europe],” Laura Mahecha, industry manager healthcare for Kline Group, said, citing concerns of “potential cardiovascular side effects.” Mahecha called the potential of a 2017 migraine switch “low to moderate.”

In the meantime, migraine already is a growing category within OTC pain relief, impacting as many as 37 million Americans. Sales of GSK Consumer Healthcare’s Excedrin Migraine were up 10.5% to $85.7 million for the 52 weeks ended Aug. 7 across total U.S. multi-outlets, according to IRI, and the brand has invested significantly to increase awareness around migraine sufferers with the introduction of the Excedrin Migraine Experience, which has generated more than 300 million impressions.

“[The migraine sufferers are] … predominantly female head-of-households who buy more premium products,” Amardeep Kahlon, marketing director respiratory health, pain relief and skin health at GSK Consumer Healthcare, said.

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HEALTH

New earplugs relieve weather-related migraines

BY Michael Johnsen

COLD SPRING HARBOR, N.Y. — Cirrus Healthcare will be launching the clinically designed earplugs MigraineX, along with an app that tracks shifts in barometric pressure, a known trigger of migraines. “Weather causes migraines,” noted Lanny Lewis, SVP business development at Cirrus Healthcare, and not a lot of people know that. Cirrus is looking to change that, Lewis said. “Before the product gets to the shelf [in first quarter 2017], we’re hoping through our Google ad words, our As-Seen-On-TV [campaign] and our app, people say, ‘I’ve heard about this.’”

(To view the full Category Review, click here.)

As many as 81% of migraine sufferers identified weather or barometric pressure changes as a migraine trigger, noted Health Union in its Migraine in America survey released earlier this year.

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Millennials turn to external pain relief

BY Michael Johnsen

The demographic that’s driving much of the 10.3% growth across external analgesics may come as a surprise because it isn’t an arthritis-suffering baby boomer.

(To view the full Category Review, click here.)

It’s the millennial shopper who’s behind that steady climb. “Millennials do not favor using oral analgesics,” said David Biernbaum, principle of David Biernbaum & Assoc., which has for years maintained a steady growth trajectory for its client Australian Dream. “Millennials are really looking for external analgesics because most [of them] don’t have severe pain.” That can prove to be a key distinction, he added, because suffers of mild to moderate pain will be more likely to shop for OTC solutions before seeking their doctor. For the 52 weeks ending Aug. 7, sales of Australian Dream were up 19.7% to $23.3 million, according to IRI.

“[They’re] looking for something that’s a healthier alternative [and] are more aware of what they’re putting into their bodies,” noted Daniel Baumwauld, VP Performance Health. “They’re not as conditioned [to taking oral analgesics] and are very keen into researching their options. That active adult is leaning more toward external than internal.”

Performance Health recently crossed its BioFreeze SKU from the professional channel to the mass market. It will be leveraged as a premium option against heavy users of the pain relieving category. Meanwhile, Performance Health’s Perform brand will be positioned against that active lifestyle enjoyed by millennials, Baumwauld said.

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