A swagger down memory lane

A look at branded trinkets from pharma days past

A few months ago, FiercePharmaMarketing asked you to send us examples of old pharma swag. More than a few of us have watermarked Klonopin coffee mugs sitting on our top shelves, or discarded Lipitor notepads at the back of our desk drawers. A quick eBay search yielded even more goodies: We stumbled across everything from a Nexium Swiss army knife to a Claritin stuffed baseball.

Then there are the pharma accoutrements: A Viagra dress tie lends a certain je ne sais quoi to formal attire, while a Flonase wristwatch could help you get to your next event on time. The list goes on and on.

For many, the items evoke nostalgia as tougher marketing policies restrict reps' giveaways to the industry. In 2006, a JAMA study showed that even cheap gifts could influence doctors' prescribing choices and other research uncovered similar results. Then, in 2008, the pharma industry agreed to a moratorium on branded trinkets, with a loophole for perks such as drug samples and "educational" gifts worth less than $100.

Fast-forward a few years to the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, which put a spotlight on pharma-doc interactions. The law requires companies to record payments to physicians, including those for speaking fees and free food. Reps sealed up their goodie bags and doled out gifts more sparingly.

Even though stricter policies have most items collecting dust, here are some of the best examples we've uncovered from your submissions and our internal nominations. Feel free to email us with any anecdotes or examples from your own collection. -- Emily Wasserman (email | Twitter)

1.) Axert water bottle
Company: Johnson & Johnson's ($JNJ) Janssen Pharmaceuticals
For: Migraines in teenagers and adults

2.) Trileptal tape dispenser
Company: Novartis ($NVS)
For: Seizures and epilepsy in adults and children over 2 years

3.) Topamax globe desk clock
Company: Johnson & Johnson's Janssen Pharmaceuticals
For: Migraines

4.) Shire flashlight
Company: Shire ($SHPG)

5.) Ortho-McNeil flashlight
Company: Ortho-McNeil, a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary

6.) Cubist Cards Against Biotechnology game
Company: Cubist ($CBST)

7.) AstraZeneca keychain
Company: AstraZeneca ($AZN)

8.) Pfizer Viagra tie
Company: Pfizer ($PFE)
For: Erectile dysfunction

9.) Flonase wristwatch
Company: GlaxoSmithKline ($GSK)
For: Allergy relief

10.) BBK Worldwide monopoly game
Pharma marketing consulting firm
Contributed by: Jennifer Schumi, Statistical Science Director at AstraZeneca

11.) Nexium Swiss army knife
Company: AstraZeneca
​For: Acid reflux

12.) Zyrtec stuffed gorilla
Company: McNeil Consumer Healthcare, a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary
For: Allergy relief

13.) Claritin stuffed baseball
Company: https://ssl.gstatic.com/ui/v1/icons/mail/images/cleardot.gifBayer
For: Allergy treatment

14.) Bristol-Myers Squibb key fob
Company: Bristol-Myers Squibb ($BMY)
Contributed by: John Watson, scientist

Read last week's piece featuring Cubist's Cards Against Biotechnology game >>