LONDON, UK (GlobalData), 30 January 2012 – The number of people opting for laser eye surgery, partly due to the aging global population, is increasing demand for refractive surgery devices, a new report by industry analysis specialist GlobalData has found.
The new report states that the global market for refractive surgery devices was valued at US$666.5 million in 2010 and is forecast to reach US$805.2 million in 2017. The market is expected to be driven by an increasing patient population suffering from refractive errors and an increased awareness of the disease and treatment options.
Aging is closely associated with functional impairments such as low vision, loss of mobility and hearing impairments. Refractive errors affect one third of people who are 40 or older in the US and Western Europe. The prevalence of refractive errors in the US was 26% in 2010. The prevalence of myopia is as high as 70-90% in some Asian countries, and females are at higher risk of developing refractive errors compared to men.
Emerging economies such as India and China are expected to drive the growth of the refractive surgery devices market due to an aging population combined with growing affordability. In 2010, 76.6 million people living in India were aged 60 or over and projections indicate that this number will reach 9% by 2016. Furthermore, previous studies have suggested that blindness due to refractive error accounted for 0.36% and 0.59% of people aged over 50 years in India and China respectively.
Femtosecond lasers are forecast to be the fastest-growing category in the refractive surgery devices market and, according the research conducted by GlobalData, are expected to account for US$188 million of the market value in 2017. In 2011, femtosecond lasers accounted for 50% of the 750,000 refractive surgeries performed in the US.
The growing popularity of femtosecond lasers in refractive surgery devices market can be attributed to their precision in corneal flap creation during refractive surgery. Femtosecond Laser in Situ Keratomileusis (LASIK) procedures have numerous advantages over conventional LASIK surgery, such as greater accuracy of flap thickness due to the absence of direct contact, smoother cuts than microkeratome cuts, and improved sterility through reduced contact with instruments.
In 2010, Abbott Medical Optics (AMO) was the leader in the global refractive surgery devices market with a share of 26%. AMO offers a broad range of Excimer and Femtosecond laser platforms. Other key players in the market with significant presence include Alcon, Bausch and Lomb, and Carl Zeiss.