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McNeil releases sugar-free, bubblegum-flavored allergy syrup

BY Michael Johnsen

SKILLMAN, N.J. McNeil Consumer Healthcare showcased its recently released Children’s Zyrtec Allergy Bubble Gum Syrup, a new sugar-free, dye-free bubblegum-flavored product used to treat upper respiratory allergies in children ages 2 years and older. “The new sugar-free, dye-free children’s allergy product offers the allergy relief of Zyrtec that parents have relied on for years, but without the addition of corn syrup or food dyes,” stated Rohinish Hooda, VP marketing, upper respiratory, McNeil Consumer Healthcare. The new formulation received approval from the Food and Drug Administration in August 2008 to treat indoor and outdoor allergy symptoms for 24 hours.

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BestMed unveils anti-snoring device that fits in nose

BY Michael Johnsen

GOLDEN, Colo. BestMed earlier this month showcased its Brez nasal breathing aids, a device that fits inside the nose and reduces snoring and improves sleep quality, at the ECRM Cough-Cold & Allergy trade event.

Available in three sizes, the device inserts easily into the nose and gently lifts, expands and supports the interior walls of the nasal passages to reduce the resistance of airflow.

Data from an independent clinical study involving 26 snorers (12 men and 14 women) with snoring (non-apneic) bed partners showed that those who used Brez experienced a 52% decrease in snoring events from an average of 1,247 to 654. Snorers who used the device had only a 22.4% likelihood of persistent snoring and disturbing their bed partner’s sleep compared with their pre-treatment scores of 100%.  

Equally interesting, 88% of bed partners reported improved sleep quality when the product was used by the snorer,” stated George Gwinn, clinical investigator for PsyPharma Global and allergy and pulmonary specialist. “Each day, pharmacists nationwide serve as front-line healthcare providers to help consumers deal with issues such as snoring. Based on these data, it appears that Brez may be an innovative solution that pharmacists can recommend.”

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Boiron expands homeopathic flu and cold relief brand

BY Michael Johnsen

NEWTON SQUARE, Pa. Boiron continued to roll out its pediatric line extensions of its popular homeopathic flu-relief brand Oscillococcinum at the ECRM Cough-Cold & Allergy conference earlier this month. The homeopathic remedies — Children’s Oscillococcinum and Children’s ColdCalm Pellets, for the flu and the cold, respectively — appear to be a natural for children. The medicines are safe and clinically proven effective in a delivery format of sweet, small pellets that kids gravitate toward.

Boiron is also packing a little marketing punch behind its pediatric line extensions with a $6.6 million advertising campaign behind Oscillo.

Given all the concern over the safety and efficacy of children’s cough and cold medicines, homeopathic cold and flu medicines helped drive higher homeopathic sales in the mass channel. Representing 64% of all homeopathic sales in food, drug and mass (minus Walmart), homeopathic cold-flu SKUs represented 91% of all homeopathic growth, according to Nielsen ScanTrack data for the 52 weeks ended Dec. 27, as cited by Boiron. Total cold and flu sales across mass channels over that period totaled $1.3 billion, up 1.2%, as tabulated by Boiron. Homeopathic cold and flu sales totaled $151.6 million, representing growth of 11.4%. Incidentally, Boiron’s cold and flu SKUs generated $9.1 million, up 13%.

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