The Total Addressable Market (TAM) for 3D medical imaging was valued at USD 4.02 billion in 2022. It is estimated to reach USD 7.16 billion by 2031, growing at a CAGR of 6.61% during the forecast period (2023–2031). The 3D medical imaging system is a new optical imaging technology that uses 3D imaging machines to make significant, detailed pictures of the inside of the body for medical analysis. The 3D medical imaging industry is on the rise as it is used to perform complex surgeries, especially in the cardiac segment and pediatric patient populations. 3D medical imaging devices support treatment and advancing surgeries. Adopting 3D medical imaging equipment could help LMICs, and rural communities reduce disease prevalence, diagnostic errors, and delayed diagnosis. 3D imaging systems trained using data from high-income countries may need to be revised for LMICs. Therefore, they are designed to reflect diverse health-related and socio-economic frameworks.
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Rising Inclination of Radiologists toward 3D Medical Imaging
Recent advances in 3D imaging allow radiologists and orthopedic surgeons to work in tandem and efficiently treat patients suffering from various musculoskeletal conditions. HCPs can now find good resolutions and access new angles and details that offer a better understanding of the body part in question with 3D medical imaging, all while reducing the dosage of radiation for patients. A survey done in 2018 by the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), an American non-profit, found that more than 40% of hospitals in the US had 3D image technology for radiology. The remaining hospitals likely have radiology PACSs that store standard 2D images.
Additionally, according to a US survey, ten hospitals publicly announced plans to buy one or more radiology 3D imaging solutions in 2018, and roughly 50 US hospitals indicated they were likely to buy one. GE Healthcare and Canon Medical Systems Corporation are some of the primary vendors dominating the radiology 3D imaging technology market. Thus, the inclination of radiologists toward 3D medical imaging drives market growth over the forecast period.
Increased Applications of 3D Reconstruction in Medical Radiology
The medical imaging segment adopts digitalization at a faster rate. Digitalization includes the use of advanced reconstruction platforms in 3D imaging. For instance, Axial3D’s SeAAS 3D images create 3D files from 2D medical images that can be viewed in a web or app viewer. The 3D advanced converter technology also has potential advantages in many otolaryngologic procedures and is affordable to permit wider use and more clinical research.
Modern computers are used to generate 3D reconstructions of organs from 2D data. Medical 3D imaging visualization software uses virtual models to show how scanned body parts look, giving 2D medical images more depth and detail. This software facilitates improved diagnoses, narrowed surgical operation learning curves, reduced operational costs, and shortened image acquisition times. Physicians and professionals in any specialty can leverage medical 3D visualization software to further their clinical analysis and simulate complicated surgeries. The high demand for 3D medical imaging reconstruction indicates the potential need for 3D medical imaging. This will fuel the expansion of the global 3D medical imaging market.
Reduced Medical Reimbursement for Diagnostic Imaging
Medical imaging is an integral aspect of preventive medicine due to the increased prevalence of screening among the general population. The total percentage and annual changes in reimbursement for all imaging modalities decreased between 2007 and 2019 in the US, according to numerous studies. In the US, MRI experienced the most significant mean reimbursement rate decrease, and bone densitometry had the most significant drop in total percentage change in the same period.
In addition, radiologists are also paid less for their services. For radiology practices to continue in the US, it is essential to comprehend these downward trends in reimbursement. The drop in reimbursement for providers has an upside for patients with Medicare Part B coverage and a co-insurance rate of 20% in the US. The declining reimbursement for diagnostic imaging is thus impeding the growth of the global 3D medical imaging market during the forecast period.
Growing Use of Digital 3D Holographic Imaging in Surgical Planning
Holography is a recent technique that facilitates the formation of 3D and holographic imaging. It is a photographic principle that produces realistic 3D images. Digital 3D holographic imaging technology can use MRI and CT scan data to create three holograms of images. These holograms give surgeons better insights into patients' pathological and anatomical conditions. Surgical visualization becomes manageable with the digital availability of 3D holograms. It also makes it simple to share digital models with other professionals and invite their opinions. Sharing holograms with patients and having discussions about surgical details also makes patients feel at ease and helps them give informed consent to treatment plans.
For instance, in August 2021, the Holoscope-i-system developed by RealView Imaging got FDA clearance. This system creates high-quality holograms. 3D hologram technology is based on the holographic technique that provides all 3D visual depth cues, simultaneously projecting all the image points at multiple depth locations. The holograms created by the Holoscope-i-system offer optical reality and will be mounted over physicians' heads.
The global 3D medical imaging market is segmented by modality, specialty, and end-user.
By modality, the global market is segmented into X-ray, ultrasound CT, MRI, and others.
The X-ray segment is the highest contributor to the market and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.97% during the forecast period. X-ray is the most common modality of imaging used by radiologists in hospitals and teleradiology practices. This low-resolution modality is challenging to interpret. It is essential to understand viewing limitations to read the image correctly due to patient positions, image quality, and tissue overlays. 3D X-ray systems have orthopedic and dental applications. Canon Medical Systems Corporation offers OrthoMod 3D used for orthopedic imaging. It enables better evaluation of spinal and pelvic postures, enhances evaluation of corrective treatment results, and provides deeper insights into pathology progression mechanisms. It also helps evaluate spine deformities in scoliosis, kyphosis, vertebral compression, dorsopathy, and posture and balance anomalies. For instance, Midmark Corporation, a US-based medical technology company, offers the Extraoral Imaging System. This 3D X-ray system produces low-noise images with incredible sharpness and improves the clarity of low-dose scans.
3D ultrasound is mainly used for fetal, cardiac, trans-rectal, and intra-vascular examinations. Doctors use 3D ultrasound to treat various kinds of tumors and to track the dynamic movement of blood cells, veins, and arteries. The 3D ultrasound segment experiences high growth due to its obstetric applications. 3D ultrasound imaging vendors draw the highest revenue from this application. Obstetricians can see gestational sacs with 3D ultrasound imaging, pinpoint the location of ectopic pregnancies, and check for fetal deformities of the face, spine, limbs, and heart. However, 3D ultrasound in gynecology still needs to be utilized. 3D ultrasound has more advantages for gynecologists. With advances in ultrasound imaging, visualized gynecological pathologies and routine assessments are rising. Assessment with 3D ultrasound allows easy and rapid patient care.
By specialty, the global market is segmented into oncology, cardiology, obstetrics and gynecology, orthopedics, neurology, and others.
The oncology segment owns the highest market share and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.23% over the forecast period. 3D medical imaging is primarily used to treat cancer patients indirectly. Laboratories create images of organs with tumors, which help physicians locate tumors and perform surgeries accurately, seen mainly in various advanced 3D cancer imaging centers. Imaging is necessary to make the best choices and achieve the greatest outcomes while diagnosing and treating cancer patients. In addition, a broad scale-up of imaging, treatment, and care quality would avert 9.55 million (12.5%) cancer deaths globally, saving 232.30 million life years, according to studies. This would cost USD 6.84 billion between 2020 and 2030 but yield lifetime productivity gains of USD 1.23 trillion globally, a net return of USD 12.43 per USD 1 invested. The global net benefit per dollar funded would be USD 2.46. Therefore, increased investments in the scaling up of imaging techniques drive the growth of the 3D medical imaging market through oncology.
Motor and sensory skills, hearing and speech, vision, coordination, and balance are tested during a neurological exam. 3D imaging techniques are used in research laboratories and neurosurgery. A study by the Stevens Institute of Technology, Stanford University, US, revealed that 3D MRI showed pulsating brain movement that could help researchers non-invasively visualize brain disorders and inform better treatment strategies for small deformations or disorders that obstruct the brain or block brain fluids. A recent study at the Massachusetts General Hospital found that 3D visualization of cerebral vasculature from CT angiography provides increased confidence in planning surgical intervention in life-threatening aneurysm cases.
By end-user, the global market is divided into hospitals, diagnostic imaging centers, and others.
The hospital segment is the highest contributor to the market and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.99% during the forecast period. The incorporation of 3D medical imaging technologies in hospitals increased in recent years. The prevalence of chronic illnesses, such as cancers, cardiovascular conditions, neurological diseases, respiratory diseases, and many other medical conditions, increases the work pressure on radiologists and departments with conventional medical imaging systems. The high adoption rate of 3D medical images is due to the prevalence of patients with several health conditions who seek delayed diagnoses. Increased diagnostic errors associated with conventional medical imaging instruments/devices/equipment is another reason hospitals adopt automated medical imaging technologies. Therefore, there is a high demand for 3D medical imaging printing that provides high-quality and accurate results in reduced time.
Diagnostic imaging centers invest in advanced technologies, such as 3D medical imaging, to increase the standards of their services. Most accredited outpatient diagnostic imaging centers use up-to-date imaging equipment, and their MRI or CT scans are performed by equally credentialed technologists and interpreted by board-certified radiologists. The cost of MRI, CT, or other radiology exams can be two to six times more in a hospital-owned imaging center than in a standalone diagnostic testing facility. Diagnostic imaging centers perform more common, non-invasive radiology tests designed for patients’ convenience and savings. Several diagnostic imaging centers that already use 3D imaging technologies report that 3D imaging technologies provide better results than conventional imaging technologies.
By region, the global 3D medical imaging market is divided into North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Latin America, and the Middle East and Africa.
North America Dominates the Global Market
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North America is the most significant shareholder in the global 3D medical imaging market and is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 6.69% during the forecast period. The presence of a vast patient population and better adoption of 3D medical imaging software and hardware are the primary factors for its high market share. An increase in investments in AI for its implementation in 3D medical imaging companies is seen in several high-income countries. The 3D medical imaging market in North America is growing because more people are getting chronic diseases, more money is being put into 3D medical imaging technologies in the healthcare field, and more money is being spent on healthcare. The increased work pressure on radiologists due to the rise in medical imaging activities increases the demand for 3D medical imaging technologies. In recent years, more start-ups have focused on 3D medical imaging, and these companies have made greater advancements with applications in various specializations, spurring market expansion.
Europe is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 6.29% over the forecast period. The demand for medical imaging devices, the rise in applications of computer-aided diagnosis, and the increase in the number of players contributed to the market growth in the region in the past years. Continuously changing lifestyles and large geriatric populations demand advances in medical imaging solutions to help in the practical and early diagnosis of diseases. R&D activities and government initiatives help to meet such requirements. In addition, Germany is the major revenue-generating country in Europe. The preference for minimally invasive surgeries increased the demand for advanced medical imaging technologies in Europe. The increased number of procedures, the geriatric population, and the number of hospitals steer the growth of the 3D medical imaging market in European countries, especially Germany.
In Asia-Pacific, the development of healthcare infrastructure, the focus on nuclear imaging, and the increased prevalence of chronic diseases are primary factors that push the market's growth in the region. China, Japan, India, South Korea, and Australia are the major revenue contributors to Asia Pacific's 3D medical imaging market. The need for medical imaging will rise during the projected period due to the aging population's rapid growth and the incidence of age-related illnesses requiring an early diagnosis. Other factors associated with the development of the market in the region include public and private funding, advances in diagnostic imaging models, and growth in medical awareness. In addition, Siemens Healthineers and GE Healthcare are some of the leading international companies dominating the Asia-Pacific market.
In Latin America, the region's population is mainly aged between 15 and 64. Brazil is the largest Latin American country in terms of area and people and the leading cause of the high mortality rate. The adoption of technological advances in healthcare is on the rise in Latin America. Increased investments in the development of 3D medical technologies boost the market's growth. Recently, the number of hospitals and imaging centers that have adopted 3D imaging centers has increased. The high diagnostic errors and sizeable geriatric population will open opportunities for the region's 3D medical imaging market to grow. However, the high cost of implementing 3D medical imaging and lack of knowledge and awareness restrain the development of the 3D medical imaging market in the region.
Turkey, South Africa, and Saudi Arabia are the major revenue contributors to the 3D medical imaging market in the Middle East and Africa. The pressure to reduce healthcare costs while addressing chronic diseases is a severe problem for governments and health agencies. Even though radiological exams are not expensive in the region, the high exposure of patients to radiation that makes patients prone to cancer contributes to increased healthcare costs. The region's market is growing due to improvements in medical imaging and rising demand for diagnostic imaging equipment. Additionally, the rise in the elderly population, prevalence of chronic diseases, high hospitalization rates, demand for imaging equipment, and increased medical awareness contribute to the growth of the 3D medical imaging market in the region.
The key players in the global 3D medical imaging market are General Electric, Siemens Healthineers, Koninklijke Philips, ATEC Spine, Analogic, Canon Medical Systems, Carestream Health, Dentsply Sirona, ESAOTE SPA, Fuel 3D Technologies, FUJIFILM, Hologic, Planmeca, Samsung Healthcare, Sonavex, Midmark, ScreenPoint Medical,and Spectrum Dynamics Medical.