Healthcare Technology Featured Article

September 10, 2014

Frost & Sullivan Report Reveals the Growth of Ultrasounds in Europe

The survival rates of breast cancer patients vary greatly throughout the world, ranging anywhere from 80 percent or higher in North America, Sweden and Japan, all the way to under 40 percent in low-income countries. The benefits developed countries have include the ability to detect the disease early, which gives women a better survival rate. This is generally achieved by taking mammograms, and patients are now demanding imaging technology that doesn’t require radiation. According to the new “Frost & Sullivan: Ultrasound is a Key Imaging Modality in Europe” report, ultrasound is seeing an uptake in the region because of all benefits the technology provides.

Ultrasound has a small footprint, is less expensive and provides more options because of the flexibility it offers. Compared to magnetic resonance which can take up several rooms, more power to operate, more technician and higher maintenance costs, ultrasound is a better alternative for healthcare providers. But the advantages also apply to patients because they are able to take a radiation free image at a time when the smallest amount of radiation can have unintended consequences.

The new analysis of the European ultrasound market from Frost & Sullivan has found it generated $1.38 billion in revenue in 2013, and it estimates it will reach to $1.68 billion in 2019.

The specialties the analysis covered include radiology, obstetrics and gynecology, surgery and cardiology. The market as whole is moving to the new technology, with primary care centers using ultrasounds and others replacing older systems with units that are more compact providing advanced solutions.

The move by hospitals to migrate to this technology is based on customer demand as well as the form factor of ultrasounds. Space is a valuable commodity, and having large machines that take up valuable space are no longer an option.

“The use of ultrasound systems as a diagnostic tool right from the initial point of consultation meets the increasing demand for screening and helps in streamlining treatment workflow,” said Frost & Sullivan healthcare research analyst Raghuraman Madanagopal. “Further, the ability to report diagnostic images instantly has been a core reason for the adoption of these systems, particularly in emergency medicines and intensive care units.”

The report points out traditional vendors in Europe and the U.S. are now facing competition from Asian vendors who are introducing high-quality ultrasound equipment at lower prices. The field is going to be driven by innovation as new methodologies are introduced which provide mobile systems with real-time imaging, volume imaging as well as 3D and 4D transducers. This includes specialization in niche market segments with equipment that can be used for a wide range of applications.

Edited by Alisen Downey

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