Pain relief treatment sales growth in Great Britain 2010-2018

In 2018, the sales value of over-the-counter (OTC) pain relief medication in Great Britain grew by 4.8 percent. This was the second highest annual growth since 2010, only behind the 6.8 percent growth in sales value which occurred in 2014. The sales value of OTC vitamins and minerals experienced a decline in two of the years shown, in 2010 and 2017.

OTC medicine market in Great Britain

The sales value of OTC drugs has increased from 1.65 billion British pounds in the year 2000, to being worth approximately 2.6 billion British pounds in 2018. Pain relief had a sales value of 565 million British pounds in 2018, making it the category with the highest value. Cough, cold and sore throat medication followed with a sales value of around 460 million, while vitamins and minerals were the third highest at 427 million British pounds.

Growth of other OTC categories

At almost seven percent, the cough, cold and sore throat medication classification had the highest growth of sales value in Great Britain between 2017 and 2018. This was closely followed by OTC eye care medication which grew by 6.8 percent from 2017 to 2018.

Annual change in sales value of OTC pain relief in Great Britain from 2010 to 2018

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Release date

September 2018


United Kingdom (Great Britain)

Survey time period

2010 to 2018

Supplementary notes

Sales data is for all outlets excluding health food stores.

*Change refers to percentage change on the same period a year earlier, except for 2011 which is change compared to the 52 week ending January 1, 2011 (not December 25, 2010).

Data from 2009 to 2013 taken from annual review's previously published by the source.
Data for 2016 refers to 52 week period ending April 23, 2016.

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Statistics on "Over-the-counter medicine industry in the United Kingdom"

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