The FDA approval of the Inceptiv, a closed-loop spinal cord stimulator (SCS) device, provides an opportunity for Medtronic to grow its share of the SCS market. The SCS market was worth $2.2bn in 2023 and is expected to reach $4.3bn in 2033, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

While this is not the first closed-loop SCS device to gain approval, as Saluda Medical received FDA approval for its product in 2022, it is the first of the larger players in the market to gain approval for an SCS device. This gives Medtronic a potential advantage in expanding its market share since the market is expected to gradually transition to closed-loop products. Medtronic currently covers approximately 29% of the rechargeable SCS market with competitors, Nevro, Boston Scientific, and Abbott making up 25%, 24%, and 13% of the market, respectively.

The overall SCS market is expected to grow as the increasing geriatric population will continue to drive demand for SCS devices that help with a whole host of chronic pain conditions. As this increase occurs, more advanced and versatile technologies such as closed-loop SCS will be increasingly appealing to patient populations and GlobalData anticipates a shift towards these products in the future.

Medtronic has gotten a leg up on its major competitors when it comes to developing this new technology in the SCS market. This will likely have a positive impact on its standing in this market as the advantages of a closed-loop device are certain to garner interest.

The value of using closed-loop SCS devices compared with open-loop devices is the ability to adjust the stimulation output. Open-loop SCS devices have a set amount of stimulation given when physicians first program the product. This approach can result in overstimulation, which may be uncomfortable for patients. Closed-loop devices can adjust their output in real-time in response to signals in the body by adapting to various body movements being performed, thus providing more customised care. With Medtronic leading the way for closed-loop SCS devices, we can expect a legitimate sales boost in this market after the launch of the Inceptiv.

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