Noven Provides Year-end Prescription Summary For Its Hormone Therapy Products

-- Noven Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: NOVN) today provided a year-end summary of total prescriptions for its principal U.S. products.

"We are pleased to report that, in December 2002, Vivelle-Dot® had a record month in total prescriptions, and CombiPatch® significantly outperformed its market segment. We are hopeful that this performance continues in 2003, as we work to normalize inventory levels for our U.S. products and position our U.S. business for renewed growth.”

Vivelle Family
The Vivelle® family of transdermal estrogen patches (which includes both Vivelle-Dot and the original Vivelle® product) had its best month since the June 2002 publication of the Women's Health Initiative (WHI) hormone therapy study results. December 2002 total prescriptions for the Vivelle family were 6.9% higher than December 2001, and 3.1% higher than June 2002. The Vivelle family increased its share of total estrogen patch prescriptions to 37.7%, up from 33.1% in December 2001 and 34.9% in June 2002. This market share positions the Vivelle family as the most dispensed brand of estrogen patches in the United States.

Vivelle-Dot, the smallest estrogen patch available, closed the year with the highest monthly total prescriptions in its history. December 2002 total prescriptions for Vivelle-Dot were 20.5% higher than December 2001, and 8.5% higher than June 2002 (the month prior to publication of the WHI study results). For the same periods, total prescription for the estrogen therapy segment declined 19.3% and 14.4%, respectively. In December, Vivelle-Dot increased its share of total estrogen patch prescriptions to 30.5%, up from 23.8% in December 2001 and 26.8% in June 2002. Vivelle-Dot represents approximately two-thirds of total prescriptions for Noven’s U.S. products.

Total prescriptions for CombiPatch, the only FDA-approved combination estrogen/progestin transdermal patch, have significantly outperformed the fixed combination hormone therapy segment. December 2002 total prescriptions for CombiPatch were 18.4% lower than December 2001, and 13.7% lower than June 2002. For the same periods, total prescriptions for the fixed combination hormone therapy segment declined 44.0% and 41.8%, respectively. CombiPatch increased its share of total prescriptions in that segment to 3.9%, up from 2.7% in December 2001 and 2.6% in June 2002.

In the U.S., Vivelle-Dot, Vivelle and CombiPatch are licensed to and marketed by Novogyne Pharmaceuticals, a women's health products company jointly owned by Noven and Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation.

About Noven
Noven Pharmaceuticals, Inc., headquartered in Miami, Florida, is a leading developer of advanced transdermal drug delivery technologies and prescription transdermal products. Together with Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, Noven owns a highly profitable women's health products company called Novogyne Pharmaceuticals. Noven's existing products include advanced estrogen transdermal delivery systems (including Vivelle-Dot®, licensed to Novogyne, and Estradot®, licensed to Novartis Pharma AG) and combination estrogen/progestin transdermal delivery systems (including CombiPatch®, licensed to Novogyne, and Estalis®, licensed to Novartis Pharma AG). With a range of additional products in development, including MethyPatch® (methylphenidate transdermal system) for ADHD, Noven is committed to becoming the world's premier developer, manufacturer and marketer of transdermal drug delivery systems. For additional information on Noven, visit the company's web site at This release contains forward-looking statements related to the business of Noven that can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as “hopeful”, “work to”, “position”, and similar words and phrases. Such statements are qualified by and subject to the risks and uncertainties specified in Noven’s most recent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission and those specified herein, including the risk that: the market for Noven’s HRT products could decline as a result of the WHI study results and/or FDA actions mandating class labeling for HRT products, including Noven’s products, either as physicians withdraw patients from HRT or as women elect to discontinue HRT on their own; health care regulators could further modify the permitted use of Noven’s products by mandatory product label changes or could remove the products from the market; Novartis could, as a result of the studies, the mandated product label changes or otherwise, change its strategies relating to the commercialization of Noven’s products; physicians and patients may not consider or select HRT patches as desirable alternatives to oral HRT because of the lack of head-to-head safety data or otherwise; Noven’s estimates of trade inventory levels for its products may be inaccurate; Noven and Novogyne may be unable to align inventories with demand as soon as hoped because of inaccurate estimates, lack of cooperation of third parties or otherwise; the decline in the demand for HRT products after the WHI studies or related labeling changes could further exacerbate the effect of high product inventory levels and delay any return to growth. Currently, Noven’s liquidity, results of operations and business prospects are almost entirely dependent on sales of transdermal HRT products. Accordingly, any adverse change in the market for HRT products (including any adverse changes resulting from the WHI studies or related labeling changes) could have a material adverse impact on Noven’s liquidity, results of operations and business prospects.

Investors & Media
Joseph C. Jones
Vice President – Corporate Affairs
Noven Pharmaceuticals, Inc.