According to Millennium Research Group (MRG), the global authority on medical technology market intelligence, implant manufacturers seeking new revenue opportunities outside the mature large-joint market will increasingly be providing small-joint arthroplasty products in Europe, particularly for the shoulder joint, which represents 60 percent of the total European small-joint implant market. Within the shoulder arthroplasty implant segment, particularly significant will be growth in stemless shoulder implants and reverse implants.

As motion-preserving implant technology improves, more patients will undergo arthroplasty at a younger age. Stemless shoulder implants are an effective bone-stock preserving alternative and clinical results increasingly show their advantages over traditional resurfacing implants. Growing interest in stemless implants will thus boost significant shoulder market activity through 2016, while attracting new market entrants.

While stemless implants are of particular interest for younger patients, reverse implants continue to be effective in treating older patients, particularly because they are effective solutions for patients with compromised surrounding soft tissue of the shoulder joint. They are increasingly being used as the first implant option in patients instead of exclusively in revisions, due to associated positive clinical outcomes. As a result, reverse implants will grow strongly both by expanding the overall patient pool and by serving as the replacement for patients who have outlived the functional life span of their original shoulder implants.

“Joint implant growth is limited by orthopedic surgeon comfort with arthrodesis,” said MRG Analyst Andrew Lee. “In arthrodesis two or more bones are fused with bone grafts and internal devices such as screws and plates. The procedure is predictable and generally shows favorable outcomes. Surgeons are also used to performing them. But arthrodesis can severely limit motion, which is a drawback for all small-joint implants. With the level of patient satisfaction and efficacy of shoulder implants we have seen thus far, the market for reconstructive small-joint implants will continue to show initial growth in the shoulder, before their use becomes more common in other joints, such as the ankle, elbow, wrist and digits.”

Ankle arthroplasty devices will also show strong growth. In contrast to the United States, mobile-bearing ankle implants have become much more popular in Europe than their fixed-bearing counterparts. Positive clinical evidence and patient satisfaction with the resulting mobility will lead to an average eleven percent annual growth in this segment of the market through 2016.

Millennium Research Group’s European Markets for Small-Joint Reconstructive Implants 2012report includes procedure, unit, average selling price and revenue information, along with market drivers and limiters and competitive landscape for arthroplasty devices used to replace the shoulder, ankle, elbow, digit and wrist joints in France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom

Source: Millennium Research Group