The global market for 3D printed medical devices is poised for rapid growth according to a new market research report by Transparency Market Research.

The firm says the 3D printed medical device market will expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 17.7 percent over the next 8 years, rising in value from $713 million in 2016 to $3.5 billion by 2025.

The current 3D printing medical device market share is led by three segments, orthopedics, cranial implants and dental restoration, which accounted for 75 percent of the overall market in 2016. The report sees those three segments as continuing to dominate over the next few years.

The researchers also divided the market into three segments around components, technology and applications.

The component segment covers the hardware, software and materials used in the process. The technology segment involves the process used in the additive manufacturing. The leading five processes include: electron beam melting, selective laser melting, selective laser sintering (metal powders), photopolymerization and direct metal laser sintering.

The applications market segment includes orthopedic and cranial implants, dental restoration, surgical instruments and tissue fabrication.

The report shows the North American region continuing to dominate the global market with 39 percent of the market in 2016, but it also provides analytical breakdowns for Europe, Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa, and Latin America.

In a similar report by Future Market Insights sees significant upside for the medical device market through reductions in lifecycle costs resulting in less materials waste and reductions in the number of manufacturing steps that will result in a much leaner supply chain, that could give 3D manufactured medical devices a competitive edge.

By contrast, the report says the costs for conventional manufacturing included costs for CNC (computer numerical control), CAM (computer aided manufacturing) programs, transit time, multiple operations, labor costs and program management for multiple vendors, which are expected to push costs up.

The researchers also noted that 3D medical manufacturing offers a significant advantage in being able to produce ‘clinical trial ready’ devices directly from CAD (computer aided design) data, which can cut the time to market costs.

The FMI researchers also highlight the acceleration of innovation that 3D printing allows, particularly in the medical device market where the need for individualized and economical medical solutions requires complex features such as rigid and flexible structures, solid and porous, and multi-material specifications. Integrating such features into products is made much simpler through 3D printing compared to the steps needed for conventional manufacturing.

FMI also segmented the medical device 3D printing market into three segments, metals and alloys, biomaterials and plastics, and sees the biomaterials market growing from $65 million in 2017 to $400 million by 2027.

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