Excedrin relaunches with app, Sparks

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Excedrin relaunches with app, Sparks
Excedrin relaunches with app, Sparks

Ten months after it was pulled due to manufacturing snafus, Novartis relaunched Excedrin with a celebrity spokesperson,  migraine app and survey of women migraine sufferers.

Jordin Sparks, a singer/actress and migraine sufferer best known as the victor in the sixth season of American Idol, will front a new education campaign dubbed “Managing Migraines: Know Your Triggers, Know Your Treatment.” The trigger tracker comes packaged with the My Migraine Triggers app, available for free on iTunes. Sparks is paired with Lenox Hill Hospital internist and sufferer Keri Peterson, MD in the effort.

“I was shocked to learn that less than half of female migraine sufferers surveyed regularly share migraine trigger information with their physician,” said Dr. Peterson in a statement.

That data point comes from an online survey of 1,000 US women which found that just 45% of female migraine sufferers share trigger information with their physicians. Only 22% said their current tracking method is effective in managing migraines.

The object here is to let consumers know the brand is back. Excedrin commands tremendous loyalty among a subgroup of sufferers, and after the drug was withdrawn in January, a black market of sorts cropped up, with reports of patients paying up to $1 per tablet online. Novartis recalled the drug, along with NoDoz, Bufferin and Gas-X Prevention, all manufactured at its Lincoln, NE plant, following complaints of chipped and broken pills and inconsistent bottle packaging line clearance practices that could result in mixed tablets.

Sparks is featured on the company's Facebook page, where visitors can enter a “What's Your Migraine Relief Story?” contest for a chance to win $5,000, and a “Thank You” print ad with comments from Facebook fans is running. Excedrin Migraine outdoor ads were featured on the Walgreens Times Square store façade through Thanksgiving.

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