Catheter ablation dominates the atrial fibrillation market

Wednesday, 21 December, 2016

Catheter ablation dominates the atrial fibrillation market

Catheter ablation is a surgical procedure, performed using thin flexible wires called catheters for the treatment of atrial fibrillation or cardiac arrhythmia. The catheters reach the heart through blood vessels to destroy the abnormal tissues that cause irregular heartbeat.

Catheter ablation dominated the overall atrial fibrillation market in 2015 and is projected to be the fastest-growing segment during the forecast period. Moreover, factors such as technological advancement in AF devices, increase in ageing population and surge in prevalence of heart diseases globally are estimated to increase the demand of catheter ablation. It is recommended when medications are ineffective as this is a minimally invasive low-risk procedure in which a small puncture is made in the thigh, neck or groin region. This is one of the factors for the rise in demand of catheter ablation devices worldwide.

According to JAMA Internal Medicine, the prevalence of atrial fibrillation is 2.3% (amongst 40-year-olds) and 5.9% (older than 65 years). Almost 70% people diagnosed with AF are in the 65–85 years age bracket. Improvement in AF ablation therapy by development of new technologies such as AF FIRM rotor mapping techniques has improved ablation therapy outcomes.

There are different types of catheter ablations, namely, radiofrequency (RF) catheter ablation, cryoablation, high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU), laser-based catheter ablation and microwave-based catheter ablation.

RF ablation is the most frequent catheter ablation procedure that uses radiofrequency current for the production of heat to destroy the heart tissues responsible for abnormal heart rhythm. Therefore, this subsegment accounted for the highest market value among catheter ablation devices in 2015. However, cryoablation uses the freezing concept for normalising and restoring the electric conduction of heart and is expected to be the fastest-growing market during the forecast period.

Catheter ablation has rendered 95.0%. Around 50,000 catheter ablation procedures are performed each year in Germany. Moreover, innovative developments such as cryoablation, laser ablation and others are anticipated to provide a promising future for the market. The provision of catheter-based AF ablation services has increased exponentially over the past decade. According to Europace Journal (2013), 82% of German cardiology centres employ catheter ablation for the treatment of cardiac arrhythmia. NHC technology submitted a report in 2014, which indicated that 56–94% of patients were free from AF in 12 months after catheter ablation, compared to 4–43% of those treated with other treatment methods or medications.


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