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Innovation Driving U.S. 3D Imaging Market
Jan 27, 2003
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The intense pace of innovations in three-dimensional (3D) imaging technologies used with computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance, angiography, and ultrasound modalities epitomize the growth of the U.S. 3D imaging market, according to a recent report.

A new analysis from Frost & Sullivan, U.S. 3D Imaging Markets, reveals that this market generated revenues worth U.S. $397.6 million in 2002 and is likely to reach $ 1.15 billion in 2009.

Latest multi-slice CT scanners and transducer technology that can generate a plethora of images and faster replacement cycle are key drivers for the sale of 3D workstations as well as 3D software applications with real time volume and spatial rendering capabilities.

According to Jim Clayton, Frost & Sullivan Research analyst, "Products that provide clinical value for complex applications such as virtual colonoscopy and calcium scoring, as well as ultrasound techniques, are facilitating market adoption and may lead to more appropriate reimbursement for 3D imaging procedures."

The demand for multi-modality workstations is on the rise as radiologists, already short in number, face additional workload due to the continuous increase in aging population with health disorders. The willingness of patients to pay out-of-pocket, despite the lack of insurance, is enabling physicians to become proficient at performing 3D imaging procedures.

Manufacturers are offering integrated and bundled solutions for the diverse requirements of hospitals and imaging centers. New products in development that include computer-aided detection with the latest 3D workstations and software applications are likely to drive the market for these products.

The development of feature rich 3D workstations and software applications combined with innovations in peripheral markets and special financial arrangements will likely increase the affordability of these products by lowering the cost of ownership.

Inspite of the economic downturn, the research firm says that large OEMs eye strategic mergers and acquisitions to drive economies of scale, enhance product portfolios and reduce the time to market.

"Companies with extensive focus on research, product differentiation strategies, and clinically proven solutions that facilitate construction of accurate Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes will dominate the market," says Mr. Clayton. "Advanced applications such as 'baby face' imaging, echocardiography, and contrast imaging that require real-time 3D ultrasound components are likely to fortify the future market."

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