Bone Densitometer: A Comprehensive Guide
Bone densitometer is a medical device used to measure bone
mineral density (BMD) accurately. It is a valuable diagnostic tool that helps
physicians assess the risk of fractures and osteoporosis. The device works by
using x-rays to measure the amount of calcium and other minerals in a specific
area of the bone. It is a non-invasive and painless procedure that takes only a
few minutes to complete. In this article, we will discuss bone densitometer in
detail, including its uses, types, benefits, and limitations.
Uses of Bone
The primary use of bone densitometer is to diagnose
osteoporosis, a condition characterized by low bone mass and increased risk of
fractures. The device can also detect other bone diseases, such as Paget's
disease, osteomalacia, and hyperparathyroidism. Moreover, bone densitometry is
helpful in monitoring the effectiveness of osteoporosis treatments and
assessing fracture risk in patients with a history of fractures.
Types of Bone
There are two types of bone densitometer: central and
peripheral. The central bone densitometer measures BMD in the hip and spine,
the area’s most prone to fractures. On the other hand, the peripheral bone
densitometer measures BMD in the wrist, heel, and finger. Both types of bone
densitometers are accurate and reliable, but central bone densitometers are
more commonly used in clinical settings.
Benefits of Bone
Bone densitometer has numerous benefits, including accurate
diagnosis of osteoporosis and other bone diseases, non-invasive and painless
procedure, and quick results. It is also helpful in identifying patients who
are at high risk of fractures and need treatment. Bone densitometry is a safe
procedure, and the radiation exposure is minimal, which means that it can be
performed on patients of all ages.
Limitations of Bone
Bone densitometer has some limitations that need to be
considered. The device can only measure BMD, and it cannot diagnose other
conditions that may increase the risk of fractures, such as bone quality, bone
turnover, and fall risk. Moreover, the device may not accurately measure BMD in
patients with severe arthritis or spinal deformities. Finally, bone
densitometer results may vary depending on the equipment used and the interpretation
of the results.
Bone densitometer is a valuable tool for diagnosing
osteoporosis and assessing fracture risk. It is a non-invasive, painless, and
quick procedure that provides accurate results. There are two types of bone
densitometers: central and peripheral. Both types are accurate and reliable,
but central bone densitometers are more commonly used in clinical settings.
Despite some limitations, bone densitometry remains an essential diagnostic
tool in the management of bone diseases.
Bone densitometer Market Dynamics
Drivers in the Bone
The bone densitometer market is driven by various factors,
including the rising incidence of osteoporosis. These devices are essential in
diagnosing and determining the likelihood of developing bone-related diseases,
such as osteoporotic fractures, osteomalacia, and osteoarthritis. Osteoporosis
is a significant concern globally, and according to the International
Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF), it results in over 8.9 million fractures
annually, with an osteoporotic fracture occurring every three seconds
The incidence of osteoporosis is expected to increase
significantly in China, with an estimated 286.6 million people projected to
have osteoporosis and osteopenia by 2020, and 533.3 million by 2050, according
to a study by the IOF. The number of hip fractures has also increased two to
three-fold in most Asian countries over the past 30 years, and by 2050, over
50% of all osteoporotic fractures will occur in Asia.
These statistics highlight the growing need for effective
diagnostic approaches, driving the demand for bone densitometers. North America
holds the largest market share for bone densitometers, followed by Europe. This
growth in North America is attributed to various factors, including high
consumer awareness, increased healthcare expenditure, the prevalence of
osteoporosis, and the presence of key market players in the region.
The global geriatric population has experienced significant
growth in recent decades. The population aged 65 and over is growing faster
than any other age group worldwide. According to the World Population
Prospects, by 2050, the number of people over 65 years old will reach 16% of
the global population, up from 9% in 2019. The geriatric population is
projected to account for one in four people living in Europe and Northern
America by 2050. Moreover, in 2018, for the first time, the number of persons
aged 65 or above outnumbered children under five years of age globally.
Furthermore, the number of individuals aged 80 years or above is estimated to
triple from 143 million in 2019 to 426 million in 2050.
Since aging is linked with physiological deterioration of
bones, the prevalence of diseases such as osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, fractures,
and joint dislocation is expected to rise in this demographic segment.
According to Osteoporosis Canada, osteoporosis is responsible for over 80% of
all fractures in individuals aged 50 years and above. The rising prevalence of
such diseases due to the growing geriatric population is expected to boost the
demand for bone densitometers in the coming years.
The prevalence of kidney disease is on the rise and it is a
significant cause of death worldwide. According to the WHO, around 195 million
women globally suffer from kidney disease. Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is the
sixth leading cause of death, and acute kidney injury (AKI) is responsible for
an estimated 1.7 million deaths each year. The likelihood of CKD increases with
age, with 38% of those aged 65 or older affected, compared to 12% of those aged
45-64 and 18-44.
Interestingly, the majority of the 2 million people who
receive treatment for kidney failure are located in only five countries: the
US, Japan, Germany, Brazil, and Italy. These countries only represent 12% of
the world population. Conversely, around 20% of people receive treatment in
about 100 developing countries, which account for more than 50% of the global
population. As kidney disease is associated with a decrease in bone mineral density
that can lead to conditions such as osteoporosis and osteopenia, its rising
prevalence may drive growth in the bone densitometers market.
Restraints in the
Bone Densitometer Market
The high cost of dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA)
scanners, which are used to detect bone mineral density, is a significant
restraint in the bone densitometer market. The price range of DEXA scanners is
relatively high, ranging from USD 9,180 to 199,000, which limits their adoption
in developing countries and small and medium-sized hospitals with controlled
budgets. As a result, these facilities often opt for significantly lower-priced
conventional systems, which hinders the conversion of analog systems to digital
systems and poses a major challenge to the market. Additionally, healthcare
facilities that purchase expensive systems often rely on third-party payers to
get reimbursements for the costs incurred in diagnostic, screening, and
therapeutic procedures performed using these systems. Continuous cuts in
reimbursements for bone density testing and diagnostic imaging scans, coupled
with increasing device costs, are preventing small and medium-sized healthcare
facilities from investing in technologically advanced devices.
Opportunities in the
Bone Densitometer Market
Emerging markets such as India, China, and Brazil present
significant growth opportunities for players operating in the bone
densitometers market. The large target patient population, improving healthcare
infrastructure, and growing healthcare awareness are some of the key factors
expected to support market growth in these countries during the forecast
period. Governments in these nations are investing heavily in modernizing their
healthcare systems to address the growing need for diagnosis and detection of
bone deformities and related diseases. Rising disposable incomes and healthcare
spending in these emerging countries are also expected to increase the
affordability of treatment procedures for bone diseases.
Challenges in the
Bone Densitometer Market
One of the major challenges facing the bone densitometers
market is the lack of access to diagnostics. Despite their high prevalence, the
majority of bone diseases such as osteoporosis and osteopenia remain
underdiagnosed and untreated. This problem is particularly acute in developing
nations due to low awareness about these diseases, as well as the
unavailability of adequate resources to diagnose these diseases. Although
osteoporosis is prevalent in developing countries like India and China, there
is a limited number of people diagnosed at an early stage due to a lack of
awareness of preventive healthcare and routine check-ups. Another factor
contributing to this problem is limited access to DEXA services.
Despite being the gold standard in measuring bone density,
diagnosing osteoporosis, and preventing fractures, DEXA testing is not widely
available due to its cost-prohibitive nature. In fact, DEXA reimbursements in
the private practice setting have been reduced by over 75% since 2007, with the
reimbursement rate falling from USD 140 to USD 42 in 2018. This has resulted in
a 50% decline in DEXA testing over the last decade. To address this issue,
members of the American College of Radiology (ACR) have lobbied for the
Increasing Access to Osteoporosis Testing for Medicare Beneficiaries Act (H.R.
2693/S. 283) in Washington, D.C., which, if passed, would set the minimum for
Medicare reimbursement at USD 98, ensuring an increase in bone density testing.
Despite the CMS raising the reimbursement rate for DEXA testing in hospital
settings, the ACR is pushing for higher reimbursement rates in private practice
settings as well.
In an effort to reduce healthcare costs, healthcare
providers have partnered with group purchasing organizations (GPOs), integrated
health networks (IHNs), and integrated delivery networks (IDNs) to collectively
purchase medical devices at a competitive price from suppliers and
manufacturers. These organizations negotiate bulk purchases of diagnostic
imaging devices, including bone densitometers, to help reduce costs for
European countries have also experienced reductions in
hospital budgets in recent years, with further decreases expected in the
future. The French government, for example, planned to reduce the public
hospital budget by USD 3.9 billion (EUR 3 billion) by 2021. As a result of
these budget cuts, hospitals are unable to afford expensive imaging devices and
often choose less expensive alternatives, such as refurbished devices or
upgrades to existing equipment. To overcome this challenge, market players must
implement effective strategies to meet the needs of these hospitals.
In 2021, the largest share of the bone densitometer market
was held by the axial bone densitometry segment. This dominance is expected to continue,
as DEXA scanners offer greater accuracy than peripheral bone densitometers and
have other advantages. As a result, the segment is expected to grow.
The osteoporosis & osteopenia diagnosis segment was the
market leader in 2021, accounting for the largest share of the global bone
densitometer market. It is expected to grow at the highest CAGR due to the
growing geriatric population and subsequent increase in the prevalence of
Hospitals & specialty clinics segment also held the
largest share of the bone densitometer market in 2021. This is due to the
higher preference of patients for hospital-based treatment monitoring of
diseases such as cystic fibrosis, chronic kidney disease, and osteoporosis.
Therefore, the segment is expected to continue to grow.
During the forecast period, Asia Pacific is expected to grow
at the fastest CAGR. This is driven by the rising geriatric population,
significant prevalence of bone-related diseases, increasing healthcare
expenditure, and growing public awareness in APAC countries. Additionally, the
expansion of global product manufacturers' presence and increasing localized
product manufacturing also contribute to market growth.
Bone Densitometer Market Key Players
- GE HEALTHCARE
- HOLOGIC, INC.
- OSI SYSTEMS, INC.
- DIAGNOSTIC MEDICAL SYSTEMS GROUP
- SWISSRAY GLOBAL HEALTHCARE HOLDING, LTD.
- BEAMMED, LTD.
- ECHOLIGHT S.P.A
- SCANFLEX HEALTHCARE AB
- MEDONICA CO., LTD.
- EUROTEC MEDICAL SYSTEMS S.R.L.
- AMPALL CO., LTD.
- L’ACN L’ACCESSORIO NUCLEARE S.R.L
- SHENZHEN XRAY ELECTRIC CO., LTD.
- YOZMA BMTECH CO., LTD.
- NANOOMTECH CO., LTD.
- OSTEOSYS CORPORATION
- FURUNO ELECTRIC CO., LTD.
- XIANYANG KANROTA DIGITAL ULTRASOUND SYSTEM, CO., LTD.
- XINGAOYI CO., LTD.
- ANJUE MEDICAL EQUIPMENT CO., LTD.
- GUANGZHOU MEDSINGLONG MEDICAL EQUIPMENT CO., LTD.
- TRIVITRON HEALTHCARE
- OSCARE MEDICAL OY
- CYBERLOGIC, INC.
- NANJING KEJIN INDUSTRIAL CO., LTD
Recent advancements in the Bone Densitometer Market
In June 2021, DMS Imaging, a part of the Diagnostic Medical
Systems Group from France, extended its white-label manufacturing agreement
with the FUJIFILM Healthcare Group. This agreement allows for the distribution
of DMS Imaging's range of bone densitometers in the ASEAN and MEA regions. The
initial distribution agreement was signed in 2017 for the European market.
In May 2019, Hologic, Inc. partnered with DEXA+ to distribute
its DXA system for measuring body composition. The partnership helped Hologic
expand its capabilities in assessing body composition.
In February 2022, Aurora Spine Corporation entered into a
joint co-marketing agreement with Echolight Medical for patient assessment of
bone mineral density (BMD) and bone microarchitecture quality, independent of
The global bone densitometer market is expected to see
significant growth in the coming years due to the rising prevalence of
osteoporosis, a medical condition characterized by weakened bones and increased
risk of fractures. Advances in medical technology and increasing awareness of
the condition have led to the development of bone densitometry devices, which
allow for accurate and non-invasive measurements of bone density.
In recent years, there has been a growing demand for
portable and handheld bone densitometers, which offer greater convenience and
flexibility compared to traditional stationary devices. These portable devices
are particularly useful in remote or rural areas where access to healthcare
facilities may be limited. Manufacturers are investing in research and
development to create more advanced and user-friendly portable bone
Another major trend in the bone densitometer market is the
integration of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning technology.
These technologies can help healthcare professionals make more accurate and
efficient diagnoses by analyzing large amounts of data from bone scans.
AI-powered bone densitometry devices can also help identify patients at higher
risk of osteoporosis and other bone-related conditions, allowing for earlier
intervention and treatment.
In addition, there is a growing focus on improving patient
comfort and experience during bone density testing. Manufacturers are
developing devices with enhanced ergonomics and reduced radiation exposure, as
well as incorporating features such as music and video displays to help patients
relax during the procedure.
North America currently dominates the global bone
densitometer market, driven by a high prevalence of osteoporosis and a
well-established healthcare infrastructure. However, the Asia-Pacific region is
expected to see significant growth in the coming years due to the increasing
prevalence of osteoporosis and a growing demand for advanced medical devices.