The Patch Looks Kind Of Spotty

Nicotine-patch sales are skimpier than ever. On July 27, Marion Merrell Dow reported that sales of its market-leading Nicoderm patch slipped to $40 million in the first half of 1994, down 34% from last year's opening half. Industry-wide, says drug analyst Hemant Shah, sales this year may barely reach $150 million in the U.S., down from $225 million last year and from more than $500 million in their introductory year, 1992. Patchmakers may eventually try to salvage the product by asking for approval to sell it over the counter, rather than by prescription.

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