Women's Health: Breaking the Incontinence Barrier
Urinary incontinence is a growing health problem with increasing social and economic significance--the direct and indirect costs of treating it total almost $20 billion in the US alone. Device companies are providing a variety of treatment options for patients with UI, including a growing number of increasingly less invasive surgical options.
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A large, undertreated patient population makes the urinary incontinence market an attractive arena for manufacturers; however, looming changes to the product approval process have added a level of uncertainty about future market growth.
The sheer size of the stress urinary incontinence market and the potential for future growth have attracted the attention of a number of emerging companies. Although investor interest has waxed and waned over the years, it appears to be heating up once again. This renewed interest is being driven in part by the push to develop efffective nonsurgical treatments that will appeal to an increasingly health-savvy patient population.
Although prostate problems have plagued men for many years, the growing elderly population is now driving an unprecedented increase in caseloads and a corresponding need for improved treatments. One of the primary concerns is the rise in prostate cancer diagnoses. With more than two million American men currently living with prostate cancer and more than 200,000 new cases diagnosed each year, the market for diagnostic and therapeutic products to address this disease is substantial; more than $2 billion in the US in 2007.