Optical coherence tomography is a non-invasive diagnostic procedure most commonly used in the field of ophthalmology. However, due to its technological benefits and in-depth visualization, optical coherence tomography finds extensive use in other medical disciplines such as dermatology, oncology, and endoscopic diagnosis.
One of the major reasons for the growth of the optical coherence tomography market is growing geriatric population. According to the World Health Organization, 13% of the global population in 2010 was constituted by the elderly, and this is expected to grow to over 50% by 2020.
Optical coherence tomography: Areas of segmentation
The optical coherence tomography market is highly fragmented and can be categorized on the basis of parameters such as geography, applications, volumetric images used, device type, and technology.
Region-wise, the global optical coherence tomography market is divided into North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and Rest of the World. The application areas of optical coherence tomography are diagnosis of conditions such as central serous retinopathy, macular hole, age-related macular degeneration, macular edema, macular pucker, vitreomacular traction, preretinal membranes, and diabetic retinopathy. The three main types of volumetric images used in optical coherence tomography are raster or rectangular volume scan, annular volume scan, and radial volume scan. On the basis of technology, the overall market can be segmented into frequency domain optical coherence tomography (FDOCT), time domain optical coherence tomography (TDOCT), and spatially encoded frequency domain optical coherence tomography (which includes Fourier domain optical coherence tomography (FDOCT) and spectral domain optical coherence tomography (SDOCT)). The major types of optical coherence tomography devices used for diagnosis include handheld OCT devices, catheter-based OCT devices, tabletop OCT devices, and Doppler OCT devices.
Optical coherence tomography markets in Asia-Pacific and Latin America expected to thrive during forecast period
Globally, North America leads the overall optical coherence tomography market, primarily driven by the growing geriatric population. Based on information provided by the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2010, the number of people above the age of 65 years in the U.S. was 22 to every 100 people. This number is expected to rise to 35 by 2020. Aging population is more susceptible to ophthalmic disorders such as age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and macular edema, thereby increasing the demand for optical coherence tomography. In addition to this, the rising number of research and academic facilities in the U.S. has also fuelled the growth of the market in this region. Europe follows North America in terms of optical coherence tomography market size, once again due to aging population and rising number of age-related disorders. Although the growth in these two regions has been remarkable so far, forecast suggests that the growth of the optical coherence tomography market in the near future will be slow owing to saturation of the market and economic slowdown.
On the other hand, optical coherence tomography markets in Asia-Pacific and Latin America are still untapped and possess immense potential for growth. Emerging nations such as Japan, China, India, and Brazil have been witnessing greater economic development along with rising awareness regarding ophthalmic ailments. This has had a huge impact on the optical coherence tomography market in these two regions. Other factors that have led to the growth of the Asia-Pacific and Latin American markets are higher disposable incomes, growing investments in biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries, and increasing acceptance of advanced medical and imaging technologies.
Oligopolistic nature of the global optical coherence tomography market
The worldwide market for optical coherence tomography is extremely concentrated with the top few companies enjoying more than half of the total market share. However, severe competition among mid-sized and small companies has begun posing a threat to the industry leaders. Some of the notable participants of the optical coherence tomography market are Novacam Technologies Inc., Canon, Inc., Agfa Healthcare, Bioptigen, Inc., PerkinElmer, Inc., Headwall Photonics, OPTOPOL Technology S.A., Heidelberg Engineering, Inc., Imalux Corporation, Topcon Medical Systems, Inc., Carl Zeiss Meditec AG, Michelson Diagnostics, St. Jude Medical, Inc., Thorlabs Inc., and Volcano Corporation.
According a market intelligence company, the global optical coherence tomography market is expected to grow to over US$1 billion in the next couple of years.
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