Smaller devices drive bigger ultrasound markets

6 January 2017 (Last Updated January 6th, 2017 09:27)

Ultrasound imaging is very widely used throughout the world to answer various clinical questions, and it is expected to further increase with the development of point-of-care ultrasound.

Smaller devices drive bigger ultrasound markets

Ultrasound imaging is very widely used throughout the world to answer various clinical questions, and it is expected to further increase with the development of point-of-care ultrasound.

Today’s portable ultrasound scanners, which provide better image quality and more advanced modes, have been met with high adoption rates. Devices based on laptops and tablets or smartphones now include Doppler capability to determine the direction and speed of blood flow, and harmonic imaging to improve image quality over that provided by conventional B-mode imaging.

Due to their reduced size and ease of use, these systems play an important role in the point-of-care market and can be used by healthcare personnel other than radiologists. More general internists, intensivists, hospitalists, pulmonary critical care physicians, anesthesiologists, and emergency physicians are beginning to use these ultrasound systems. In addition, physicians can procure these systems at lower cost and can do some initial level of clinical assessment in the office itself or by the patient’s bedside. These systems are expected to drive the ultrasound devices market to new heights as use of the technique grows to become an integral part of different stages of the clinical workflow.

GlobalData estimated the ultrasound market to be worth $4.2 billion in 2016 and projects that it will be worth $5.0 billion in 2023, increasing at a steady Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 2.5 percent during this period. The growth in market volume is largely offset by negative pricing pressures and cost-containment measures in national healthcare systems, especially in Europe, resulting in slight revenue growth in the ultrasound market. The market for portable devices is expected to grow with a robust CAGR over 5 percent globally.
 
With the growth of the elderly population and rising awareness of early diagnosis worldwide, the need for ultrasound systems is growing consistently. GlobalData does not expect portable ultrasound devices to replace the high-end ultrasound systems with additional imaging capability, but these cost-effective systems will become a major segment within diagnostic ultrasound, allowing access to better healthcare in the future.