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Aging Population Fuels European Cataract Device Market


August 17, 2005—The incidence of cataracts is rising dramatically in Europe as the continent’s population ages. Thanks to early diagnosis and treatment, however, many European patients no longer face the prospect of blindness caused by this age-related condition. According to a newly published report by Millennium Research Group (MRG), the number of surgical cataract procedures performed in Europe will increase at an annual rate of almost 5% over the next 5 years. Rising procedure volumes will, in turn, promote sales of both intraocular lenses (IOLs) and viscoelastics. Both devices play an important role in cataract surgery: IOLs are used to replace cataractous lenses, and viscoelastics provide structure and support for the eye as the cataract procedure is performed.

Two opposing factors will determine the growth trajectory of the European IOL and viscoelastic markets. While increasing procedure volumes will continue to drive unit sales, manufacturers will be forced to cope with declining selling prices across the continent. In France, an impending switch to a Diagnosis Related Group reimbursement system will enable hospitals to command lower prices for IOLs. In the UK, bundling deals established by major international manufacturers will continue to offer deep discounts to the list prices. Over the next 5 years, these factors will limit the potential growth of the cataract device markets by 1 to 2%, but will not stop them from exceeding $230 million by 2009.

MRG’s European Markets for Ophthalmic Devices 2005 is part of a global series that also examines the US and Japanese ophthalmics markets. The global series includes coverage of over 30 key industry competitors, including Alcon (ACL), Advanced Medical Optics (EYE), Bausch & Lomb (BOL), IntraLASE (ILSE), Carl Zeiss Meditec (CZMWF.PK), and Lumenis (LUME.PK).

A leading source of competitive intelligence, MRG is now the largest provider of medical device market research in the world. Located in Toronto, Canada, MRG covers global markets and has pioneered reporting of numerous emerging products.


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