According to market intelligence company Millennium Research Group (MRG), the United States gastrointestinal (GI) endoscopy market will grow moderately through 2016, largely driven by an ageing population and greater screening for colorectal cancer (CRC). Several segments will show much greater growth, particularly Barrett’s esophagus ablation and GI stents. The overall US GI endoscopy market will reach a value of nearly $2.5 billion by 2016.
Being a marketer in the medical technology sector is a lot like being a commercial fisherman in the North Sea. The good times eventually pass due to the presence of too many competitors and not enough fish, which ultimately drives the savvy trawlerman to target smaller populations of hitherto uninteresting species, trying to convince us that they’re tasty and worth buying.
So it is with the GI space where we’ve commented before that as a market matures companies need to find new niche applications, ideally for their own technology, but often justifying acquisition. Most competitors in the GI endoscopy market have focused their efforts on the large GI stent opportunity, with an increasing amount of clinical evidence supporting their use. There’s no doubt growth left in that market, estimated as 9% per annum as physicians become more confident in placing stents, partly as a result of technological developments in delivery systems. Biggest growth is expected to come from the less-penetrated duodenal and colonic indications while biliary stents will remain the largest segment and revenues will benefit from the continued adoption of premium-priced covered metal stents.
So where’s the new and interesting catch?
We’ve covered Barrett’s Esophagus before and the condition has now started to hit the headlines for three main reasons… better diagnosis, better treatment options and long term efficacy data. The result, MRG reckons, is treatment and procedures increasing at nearly 24 percent per year through 2016. That probably spells good news for Covidien following its acquisition of Barrx last year and subsequent commercialisation of its HALO system. Alternative technology includes cryoablation/cryospray devices such as GI Supply’s Polar Wand and CSA Medical’s truFreeze.
“The biggest underlying driver of growth for the GI endoscopy device market in the United States will be CRC screening,” said MRG Analyst Travis Allen. “Expansion of reimbursement for screening due to the healthcare reform will increase the number of polyps detected and cancers diagnosed at an early stage, resulting in a larger number of gastrointestinal endoscopy procedures. This will particularly boost sales of polypectomy snares, biopsy forceps, hemostasis devices and GI videoscopes.”
Source: Millennium Research Group