A new procedure gaining ground in the treatment of hypertension for refractive conditions is the denervation of renal nerves by ablation. Transparency Market Research (http://www.transparencymarketresearch.com/), a leading U.S.-based market research firm, analyses the growing incidence of refractive hypertension, where patients are unable to control hypertension through several drug regimens. The market for renal denervation is forecasted to grow at a compounded annual growth rate of 41.2% for the period 2012 to 2021.
The business story of renal denervation began with the acquisition of Ardian Inc. by Medtronic for its RDN system “Symplicity” for USD 800 million in 2010. The medical device giant was firmly convinced in its purchase and the results were seen instantaneously. The acquisition was immediately followed by other medical device majors such as Boston Scientific, Covidien and St. Jude Medical, all following suit to prepare for battle in this new market segment. St. Jude Medical, unlike others, has invested in developing their own version of RDN device as against acquiring suitable technology from a smaller development-stage company. Unlike Medtronic’s Symplicity, Covidien, Boston Scientific and St. Jude Medical offer catheters with multiple electrode leads that will reduce the procedure time to less than half of that of the Symplicity procedure. St. Jude Medical’s EnligHTN device has already been hailed in the medical community as the next best technology. Covidien’s purchase of Maya Medical and Boston Scientific’s purchase of Vessix Vascular has initiated Medtronic to develop a multi-electrode Symplicity device that should be approved in the next few years.
The ablation of renal nerves is carried out by a radiofrequency catheter which is inserted through the femoral artery into the renal artery. Radiofrequency as a source of ablation in renal denervation was followed quickly by new improved devices with other ablation sources such as ultrasound and chemical, which are under clinical research and will compete in the market by 2018. Recor Paradise and Kona Medical are the pioneers in the use of ultrasound for renal denervation. Cryoablation for renal denervation is in a very nascent stage with reports of university research in the United States and some parts of Europe since 2011 in animal models only.
Since Medtronic achieved marketing approval by FDA in the United States for its Symplicity system, it has a significant lead in this field as United States is considered to present significant opportunities in terms of revenue due to a high incidence of hypertension and increasing incidence of refractive hypertension. TMR analyzes that other competitors may enter the North American market only after 2014. The incidence of refractive hypertension has increased partially due to multiple drug resistance and now threatens to become completely ineffective for many people. Desensitizing renal nerves has proved to be clinically efficient for many sample studies and can now be safely performed on many people.
The next few years will usher in a new era for this technology as it gains acceptance in the American medical community opening a brand new market avenue for more players in the hypertension segment of the healthcare industry.