February 28, 2024

Exploring Viscosupplementation: Market Opportunities and Emerging Technologies

The Viscosupplementation Market is estimated for 2023 for the forecast period 2024-2031, as highlighted in a new report published by Coherent Market Insights.

Viscosupplementation involves administering hyaluronic acid injections into the knee joints of patients suffering from osteoarthritis to supplement the fluid in the joints and protect the cartilage. It provides lubrication and cushioning to joints affected by osteoarthritis.

Market Dynamics:

The global viscosupplementation market is expected to witness significant growth over the forecast period, owing to the rising prevalence of osteoarthritis across the world. According to Arthritis Foundation, osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis and affects over 32.5 million adults in the US alone. Moreover, osteoarthritis is more common in women as compared to men. Viscosupplementation plays a crucial role in managing the symptoms of osteoarthritis such as pain and swelling, thereby driving the adoption of viscosupplements. Furthermore, advancements in hyaluronic acid formulations with enhanced efficacy and safety are also fueling revenue growth of this market.

Major Driver

The viscosupplementation market is being driven significantly by the rising geriatric population globally. Age is one of the major risk factors for osteoarthritis as it is often associated with wear and tear of the cartilage in joints over several years. As per United Nations estimates, the number of people aged 60 years and above is expected to double from 12% to 22% between 2015 and 2050. With increasing life expectancy, the incidence of osteoarthritis and demand for its treatment is mounting. Viscosupplementation offers a minimally invasive treatment option with demonstrated safety and efficacy in alleviating joint pain caused by osteoarthritis. Manufacturers are gaining a steady patient pool undergoing repeat intra-articular hyaluronic acid injections as the condition is generally chronic and recurrent in nature.

Market Restraint

Reimbursement policies present a major challenge impeding the growth of the viscosupplementation market. The demand for viscosupplementation significantly depends on insurance coverage and reimbursement policies as out-of-pocket costs can be high. However, reimbursement for intra-articular hyaluronic acid injections is limited in many countries due to the questions regarding the treatment’s long term efficacy and cost-effectiveness. For instance, in the US, Medicare covers the injections in specific joints only if other treatments fail but private payers’ policies vary significantly. Unfavorable changes in governmental and private insurance plans regarding arthrocentesis and viscosupplementation limit access to care and treatment adherence. Manufacturers have to invest in extensive clinical research to strengthen the value proposition of viscosupplementation to influence positive reimbursement reforms.

Market Opportunities

The viscosupplementation market players have major opportunities for growth by introducing innovative product formulations with better performance attributes. Unlike traditional single-injection hyalurronic acid products, manufacturers are developing multi-injection formulations aimed at prolonged symptomatic relief for osteoarthritis patients. Additionally, they are focusing on cross-linked hyaluronic acid derivatives and gel preparations to improve the residence time in joints and efficacy. Research efforts to develop cost-effective bioengineered viscosupplements are also ongoing. The clinical validation of more durable formulations can boost revenue streams for companies by increased sales volumes per patient. It presents an avenue to position viscosupplementation higher in the osteoarthritis treatment algorithm and challenge the stronghold of alternative therapies.

Market Trends

One of the significant trends being witnessed in the viscosupplementation market is the increasing prevalence of obesity which is recognized as a major risk factor contributing to the rising disease burden of osteoarthritis globally. Obesity accelerates the mechanical wear and tear of weight-bearing joints like knees and hips by adding extra stress. It also heightens the risk of developing osteoarthritis by 3-5 times. As per latest WHO estimates, about 13% of the world’s adult population is obese. If current overweight and obesity trends continue unabated, by 2030, an estimated 38% of the world’s adult population will be overweight and 20% will be obese. This obesity pandemic is anticipated to correspond to the osteoarthritis prevalence, driving greater demand for viscosupplementation procedure.

*Note:

  1. Source: Coherent Market Insights, Public sources, Desk research
  2. We have leveraged AI tools to mine information and compile it