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Survey Reveals Majority of Americans Hold onto Myths About What Causes Colds and How to Treat Them
Date:10/19/2010

More than half (52 percent) of pharmacists typically recommend taking zinc products in the early stages of a cold, with only 12 percent of consumers proactively doing so.  In fact, the surveys show consumers are three times as likely to try chicken soup (41 percent) as a means of stopping the progression of a cold as they are to try zinc (12 percent).

"The surveys point to a clear need for pharmacists and doctors to educate consumers on early intervention, and help them identify the best remedies to treat the common cold early and help them get over it faster," says Dr. Eckel.  "Zinc-based products such as Zicam do more than just relieve symptoms - they are effective at actually shortening the duration of a cold."

As pharmacists continue to play a more prominent role in consumer care, 98 percent of pharmacists agree they should be more involved in educating consumers about appropriate cold treatments, and 83 percent of pharmacists believe they should be a primary resource of information about colds and flu.  Most consumers agree, with 89 percent of consumer survey respondents saying they feel comfortable asking pharmacists about OTC medicines and cold remedies.

About the SurveysThe consumer survey was based on a nationally representative sample of 500 U.S. adults.  Respondents were carefully sampled and recruited to represent the full U.S. adult population in terms of gender, age and region according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau.  Data was collected between August 17 and August 22, 2010.

The pharmacist survey was based on responses from a sample of 500 licensed pharmacists from independent, chain and large retail (supermarket) pharmacies.  The sample was drawn from a full list of more than 60,000 pharmacies in the United States.  Only one pharmacist per pharmacy was allowed to participate.  Data was collected between August 12 and August 25, 2010.  

The margin of sampling error
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SOURCE Matrixx Initiatives, Inc.
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