Women First HealthCare Health Advisory Board Advocates New Concept in Estrogen Replenishment Therapy that Supports Use of Transdermal Patches

SAN DIEGO, Nov. 19, 2001 (PRIMEZONE) -- Women First HealthCare, Inc. (Nasdaq:WFHC), a San Diego-based specialty pharmaceutical company, has launched a physician educational program involving a new approach to treating postmenopausal women with estrogen. The idea is based upon the need for individualized patient treatment rather than the traditional "One Size Fits All" approach. The methodology recommends starting new patients on transdermal estrogen, monitoring blood levels, adjusting dosage to a therapeutic range and ensuring that each patient has the appropriate and individualized dose.

The concept was advocated by the Women First HealthCare Health Advisory Board, a group of six internationally recognized experts in women's health care. The program was then developed by two members of that Board, Daniel R. Mishell, Jr., MD, professor and chairman, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California, and Leon Speroff, MD, professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Oregon Health Sciences University School of Medicine. It is being offered to clinicians using a multimedia medical educational program, and information will be made available via the Internet at www.womenfirst.com.

Dr. Mishell stated, "In a day and age where the benefits and risks of estrogen replenishment therapy are controversial, non-use is the biggest challenge. The standard of care has been treating women empirically with one or two doses of oral estrogen based upon studies of bone loss in large numbers of treated women. However, every woman metabolizes estrogen differently, and her response to the same dose of estrogen is variable. Measuring estradiol levels in blood can determine the effect of estrogen on each woman."

"With oral therapies, estradiol levels vary greatly according to time after ingestion and metabolism," added Dr. Mishell. "Transdermal therapies provide a constant, steady release of estradiol and allow measurement of estradiol at any time period."

Commenting on the program, Edward F. Calesa, Women First chairman, president and CEO, noted, "This is a new concept for estrogen, but it is the standard approach for other endocrine conditions such as hypothyroidism and diabetes. We have an appropriate solution for this concept because our product is transdermal, and it is the only product with five different approved doses."

About Women First HealthCare, Inc.

Women First HealthCare, Inc. (Nasdaq:WFHC) is a San Diego-based specialty pharmaceutical company. Founded in 1996, its mission is to help midlife women make informed choices regarding their health care and to provide pharmaceutical products -- the Company's primary emphasis -- and lifestyle products to meet their needs. Women First HealthCare is specifically targeted to women age 40+ and their clinicians. An internationally recognized Health Advisory Board of experts in women's health guides Women First HealthCare in the development of information and products for women and clinicians as women transition from perimenopause through postmenopause. The Company operates in three segments: Pharmaceuticals, Consumer Business and Corporate Marketing. Product focus currently includes estrogen replenishment, headache management, antibacterial/urinary tract infection management, dietary supplementation and self-care/lifestyle. Further information about Women First HealthCare can be found online at www.womenfirst.com, About Us and Investor Relations. Information about the Company's As We Change(r) national mail order catalog and Internet retailer can also be found online at www.aswechange.com.

Safe Harbor Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: This press release may contain certain "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements are subject to various risks, and Women First HealthCare, Inc. cautions you that any forward-looking information is not a guarantee of future performance. Women First HealthCare, Inc. disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements. Actual results could differ materially due to a number of factors, including (i) we have incurred significant losses since we were founded in November 1996, and if midlife women do not use, and their clinicians do not recommend, the products we offer, we will continue to experience losses; (ii) there is a limited market awareness of our Company and the products and services we offer; (iii) we may not be able to identify appropriate licensing, co-promotion or acquisition candidates in the future or to take advantage of the opportunities we identify; (iv) we and our products face significant competition; (v) if we do not successfully manage any growth we experience, we may experience increased expenses without corresponding revenue increases; (vi) we are dependent on single sources of supply for all of the products we offer; (vii) reduced consumer confidence could adversely affect sales by our Consumer Business Division; and (viii) additional factors set forth in the Company's Securities and Exchange Commission filings including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the period ended December 31, 2000 and its Form 10-Q for the period ended September 30, 2001.


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