Not all medical devices are complicated or highly technical. One of the most in-demand products is straightforward: catheters.
The High Demand for Catheters
Catheters are flexible tubes inserted into a particular part of the body, the purpose of which can vary. For example, a urinary catheter connects to the bladder and help remove urine. Doctors can also use the same materials in minimally invasive surgeries, including those of the heart.
The global market demand for catheters is soaring. According to Businesswire, it will achieve a compound annual growth of nearly 7% from 2019 to 2026. By the end of the forecast period, the total market value could reach at least $30 billion in 2020.
Meanwhile, Grandview Research shared the same positive sentiment. In 2018, the market size was over $35 billion. However, it could balloon by 2026 as experts believe it could grow by 9.7% within the forecast period.
Factors that Fuel Growth
Disease remains the most significant driving factor for catheter demand. These include cardiovascular disease, kidney disorders, diabetes, and hypertension.
These conditions, although different from one another, are also interrelated. Studies already showed that diabetes and hypertension increase the risk of heart disorders. High blood pressure is a risk factor for chronic kidney disease (CKD).
In the United States alone, about 80 million or 33% of the population are at risk of CKD. According to the Diabetes Research Institute, over 30 million or about 30% of Americans have diabetes. These figures exclude those who remain undiagnosed as symptoms usually don’t show until the conditions have already progressed.
Other factors include:
1. Manufacturing efficiency – Unlike other devices, catheters are easier to design and produce. Dealing with cartridge heaters suppliers also makes the job more efficient. Cartridge heaters are slim tubes inserted into drilled holes to create molds fast. With molds, manufacturers can create standard, acceptable, and quality catheters for the market.
2. The popularity of minimally invasive surgeries – Surgeries are still the gold-standard treatment for several conditions. However, the invasive ones carry higher risks and complications. They are also more expensive and have longer recoveries.
For this reason, medical communities are pushing for minimally invasive surgeries when they can. One of these is angioplasty with cardiac catheterization. In this process, a cardiologist inserts a catheter and introduces a dye to see the cardiac anatomy of the patient. Depending on the condition, the doctor can proceed with adding a stent and a balloon to dilate narrowed or blocked blood vessels.
3. Aging – Many countries have a growing aging population. An example is the United States. By 2030, all older adults will be over 65 years old. They will then account for 21% of the population, an increase from 15% in 2018. By 2060, a quarter of the population will be a senior, while the number of 85-year-olds will increase by three-folds.
While many Americans are now living longer, aging is also a risk factor for the above conditions.
Breaking into the healthcare industry is difficult and complicated, but manufacturers who want to get a share of an equally large industry can consider making catheters. The cost of production can be significantly lower, but the market need is high.