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Gastrointestinal Over the Counter (OTC) Drugs: Report Highlights the Competitive Scenario with Impact of Drivers and Challenges


The gastrointestinal over the counter drugs market is growing at a significant rate mainly due to increase in patient population. Strategic alliances are one the major trends that can be seen in the gastrointestinal over the counter drugs market and is supporting the market to grow at a more considerable rate.

Gastrointestinal diseases involve the gastrointestinal tract including stomach, esophagus, large intestine, small intestine, gallbladder, rectum, liver and pancreas. Over the counter (OTC) drugs are medications that are available without any prescription from the doctor. Over the counter drugs are chosen by regulatory agencies very carefully so as to ensure their efficacy and safety.

On the basis of types of product, the gastrointestinal over the counter drugs market can be categorized as laxatives, gastrointestinal cancer treatments, gastric acid reducers, anti diarrheals, proton pump inhibitors, h2 inhibitors, gastric acid neutralizers, bowel anti-inflammatory and anti emetics. On the basis of indication, the gastrointestinal over the counter drugs market can be categorized as nausea due to motion sickness, heartburn, flatulence, diarrhea and constipation.

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High expenditure on advertisement is one of the major factors restraining the growth of the gastrointestinal over the counter drugs market.

Many countries have applied regulations regarding the gastrointestinal over the counter drugs in their countries. In Canada, an intermediate category exist which states that non prescription stuffs must be kept in a store room, behind the counter, or on a shelf visible to the pharmacist and the stuffs include weak muscle relaxants, codeine products, and antihistamines. In the Netherlands, categories of non prescription drugs have been made as uitsluitend recept, uitsluitend apotheek, uitsluitend apotheek of drogist and algemene verkoop. The uitsluitend apotheek drug can be on the shelves like any other product. Uitsluitend apotheek of drogist can be sold at drugstores and it includes only a small selection of drugs such as cough medicine and painkillers. Algemene verkoop drugs can be sold at gas stations and supermarkets, and it includes drugs with minimal risk to the public such as cetirizine, paracetamol, loperamide, and 200 mg ibuprofen.

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In the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration regulates the manufacturing and sale of over the counter drugs. The Food and Drug Administration compels that all new drugs should obtain a new drug application (NDA) before it enters throughway, but the act excuse any drug which is recognized as effective and safe for the requirement. Some of the over the counter drugs approved in the U.S. are anti-microbial, sunscreens, anti fungal products, and internal and external analgesics. In the U.K., Medicines Regulations 2012 governs the medication. Medication in the country is categorized as a general sales list, prescription only medication and pharmacy medicines.

Some of the competitors in the gastrointestinal over the counter drugs market are Procter & Gamble, GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals Limited, Purdue Pharma L.P., Bayer AG, Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH, Johnson & Johnson Private Limited, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., Pfizer Inc., Reckitt Benckiser Group plc, C.B. Fleet Company, Inc., Perrigo Company plc, Sanofi, OMEGA SA, Abbott Laboratories, and Nestle SA.