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Estimated at $18.5 billion in 2002, dietary supplement sales accounted for approximately 9% of the U.S. health care products market (defined as pharmaceutical drugs, over-the-counter healthcare products and dietary supplements); according to new research by San Diego-based Nutrition Business Journal. The condition-specific supplement segment of the total dietary supplement market is B$9. 

Dietary supplements are one of the largest categories of the total Health & Beauty Care (HBC) product marketplace. Key reasons for estimates of continued strength of the category are general population demand for supplement products, increased scientific support, publicity and consumer awareness of the health benefits of dietary supplements, and medical community acceptance of dietary supplements

Source: NUTRITION BUSINESS JOURNAL – Supplement Business Report


Over-the-counter (OTC) or nonprescription drug sales were B$58 in 2002. Nonprescription drugs are conveniently available through 65,000 pharmacies and thousands of other retail outlets in the U.S. 

Many former prescription drugs have been converted to nonprescription (OTC) status. Among these are familiar products such as Advil, Afrin, Drixoral, Aleve, Pepcid AC, Zantac-75, Nicorette, Rogaine, Lamisil, Claritin and Claritin D. More than 1,000 OTC drug products now contain active ingredients that were formerly prescription-only. Rx-to-OTC switches have been historically approved at a fraction (usually one-half) of the prescription strength. Some OTC data includes: 

U.S. consumers purchase 5 billion OTC medications each year.
Of 3.8 billion health problems treated annually in the United States, 2.2 billion (58 percent) are treated with one or more OTC medications.
Forty percent of the U.S. population consume at least one OTC drug in any given 48-hour period.
America's elderly population (13 percent of the U.S. population) consume 33 percent of all OTC medication sold.

Safe and effective nonprescription (OTC) drugs are used to manage or assist in the management of more than 450 medical conditions, including headache, dry eye, constipation, diarrhea, athlete's foot, sunburn, head lice, fever, acne, PMS and motion sickness. 

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