Nuclear Medicine: A Global Strategic Business Report
San Jose, CA (PRWEB) November 01, 2012
Follow us on LinkedIn – Nuclear medicine encompasses therapeutic and diagnostic procedures, which are economical, safe and painless techniques. Following years of strong growth, the global nuclear medicine market entered into a tumultuous phase beginning 2008. The global economic downturn on one side and changes in reimbursement and insurance requirements in developed markets such as the US on the other, have resulted in market declines that lasted until 2010. Other factors such as saturated Western markets, restrictions imposed by the Governments in certain high potential countries such as China, and low rates of reimbursement have weighed down market growth and resulted in a decline in the sales of imaging equipment.
Decrease in demand in the US market, the leading and mature nuclear medicine market worldwide, was one of the major reasons for the revenue decline. The medical imaging systems and equipment in the country were not used to their fullest capacities and hence were unable to yield the required revenue gains. Even as the developed markets witnessed significant pressures, India and other countries in the Asia Pacific region were relatively less impacted. Market decline was, however, short-lived, as things began to normalize by the end of 2010, and the market bounced back to positive growth in 2011, as molybdenum supply issues as well as procedural growth recovered. Going forwards, advancement in technologies, which in turn are expanding the clinical scope of these technologies, and increasing target patient base are expected to help regain lost momentum in the market.
The nuclear medicine market is marked by continued technological advancements, which are expected to drive global market demand. Nuclear imaging has witnessed continuous enhancements in terms of technology since the time of its conception about sixty years ago. Growing fusion technologies especially in cardiac and oncology segments will also propel market growth. The market is gradually transitioning from PET imaging and SPECT imaging to hybrid PET/CT and SPECT/CT imaging due to widening application of the hybrid technologies encompassing a range of clinical procedures. Within these hybrid systems, advanced PET/CT imaging systems would occupy the leading position with specific technological advances, while the hybrid SPECT/CT segment would be driven by organ-specific diagnosis and cost considerations. On the other hand, standalone equipment market would decline with increasing popularity of combination diagnostic techniques. In developed countries, where the nuclear medicine equipment markets are already saturated, focus will be on upgrading the standalone systems to hybrid units that offer high level functional as well as anatomical details.
There was also a consistent scarcity of medical isotopes worldwide during 2010 adding to the woes of device suppliers. Suppliers of the isotopes were ill-equipped to meet orders, due to old reactors and regular closing down of reactors for periodic maintenance and quality control purposes. The Canadian National Research Universal (NRU) reactor accounts for a major share of the medical isotopes production in the world. The reactor stopped production temporarily in 2009 leading to worldwide isotope shortage. Physicians had no other option than to prescribe tests that were relatively less precise, invasive and costlier. The trend resulted in a further reduction in spending on new imaging equipment. The market witnessed a moderate, yet considerable shift towards other imaging modalities, which significantly impacted procedural growth during this period. The gamma cameras market, in particular, witnessed tough time during the period as procedural volume took a plunge as a result of confluence of factors such as shifting procedural volume towards PET and cardiac PET, as well as shortage in supply of molybdenum, which is a precursor to technetium-99m. These factors created significant uncertainly among users of SPECT systems, forcing many to ponder over shifting to alternative modalities such as PET, further fuelling the ongoing market evolution to the more advanced PET systems.
Growth post recession could, in part, be attributed to continued rise in incidences of neurological and cardiac diseases worldwide. Increase in the prevalence of cardiac diseases emerged as a significant growth factor for advanced diagnostic and medical imaging devices that provide the crucial medical intervention by accurately diagnosing the disease state. Nuclear imaging procedures are generally employed to detect cancerous growths, for the prognosis of susceptibility to brain disorders, and for the clinical assessment of cardiac risk. Rising incidences of cardiac arrests and brain disorders, increasing propensity to acquire cancerous growths and ageing population are resulting in heightening health concerns and are popularizing preventive medicine in the consumer groups. Consequently, there are a greater number of periodic diagnostic tests performed. Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, dementia and heart failure are other kinds of diseases that are fueling the demand for preventive diagnostics.
As stated by the new market research report on Nuclear Medicine, the US occupies the leading position in the global nuclear medicine market. The country garners the largest share of the world market, trailed by Europe and Japan. There has been a rapid adoption of SPECT/CT cameras in the US, in the recent past, in the backdrop of growing demand for quantitative SPECT and CT-based attenuation correction. The growing popularity of SPECT/CT has led to the discovery of certain new clinical markets, for instance, neuroendocrine tumor imaging, thereby creating new opportunities for both device makers and contrast media suppliers. However, the market is witnessing a shift towards PET and PET/CT systems.
Despite the dominance of the US, growth in the global market would be spearheaded by emerging markets, more particularly, Asia-Pacific, which is projected to rise at a compounded annual growth rate of 10% during the analysis period. Segment-wise, Gamma Cameras represents the largest market, while PET Scanners is projected to drive future growth in the global nuclear medicine market.
The nuclear medicine market is fairly concentrated. A handful of the most influential medical device companies control a majority share in the worldwide nuclear medicine market. These companies operate large sales force, and have significant installed base and strong research and development activities. Key players profiled in the report include Digirad Corporation, GE Healthcare Plc, Philips Healthcare Inc., Positron Corporation, Siemens, and Toshiba Medical Systems Corporation, among others.
The research report titled “Nuclear Medicine: A Global Strategic Business Report” announced by Global Industry Analysts Inc., provides a comprehensive review of industry overview and outlook, major trends and issues, product innovations, recent industry activity, and profiles of select market players worldwide. Analysis and overview is presented for major geographic markets including the US, Canada, Japan, Europe (France, Germany, Italy, UK, Spain and Rest of Europe), Asia-Pacific and Rest of World for the period 2010-2018. The report provides global and regional market estimates and projections (in US$) for Nuclear Medicine (Imaging Equipment) for product segments – Gamma Cameras and PET Scanners. Additionally, market estimates and projections are provided for the US and European markets for Gamma Cameras by sub-segments - Single Head Gamma Cameras, Dual Head Gamma Cameras and Triple Head Gamma Cameras. The study also presents historic data for an insight into market evolution over the period 2004 through 2009.
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