Prescription Drug Sales: Quarter 1, 2013

The acid blocker esomeprazole (Nexium, AstraZeneca) and the antipsychotic medication aripiprazole (Abilify, Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co) are the top-selling US prescription drugs for the first quarter of this year, according to a recent report on, an online drug information resource. The two medications rank as sales leaders for the fourth quarter in a row. Depression and pain agent duloxetine (Cymbalta, Eli Lilly), which faces end-of-year patent loss, came in third, topping rosuvastatin (Crestor, AstraZeneca). Asthma and COPD inhaler salmeterol-fluticasone propionate (Advair Diskus, GlaxoSmithKline) came in fifth. The recent US influenza season boosted sales for oseltamivir (Tamiflu, Roche), which jumped 32 spots on the sales list and posted a 65% sales increase. Other respiratory medications, including palivizumab (Synagis, Abbot) for pediatric respiratory syncytial virus and salmeterol-fluticasone propionate, also saw a boost in sales.