Thermal patches used for treating back ailments are something that most Western Europeans will be familiar with. But the range of medical patches is actually much wider, a fact that is not generally well known in Europe. Current products include, for example, pain patches, hormone replacement patches, nicotine patches, patches that help alleviate asthma, as well as patches that nurses use to administer rivastigmine to Alzheimer’s patients or that doctors use to supply Parkinson’s patients with rotigotine. For cancer patients, there are even special patches that allow the gentle administration of painkillers. This segment is referred to as ‘transdermal products’. The term is derived from the Greek ‘derma’ for skin and the Latin prefix ‘trans’, meaning ‘to go over to something’. Worldwide, the market for transdermal products has a turnover of around 6.4 billion US dollars.