Breast imaging technologies to grow to $5B by 2017

The global breast imaging market is expected to rise at a compound annual growth rate of 15.37 percent until 2017, reaching a total worth of $5 billion, announced research firm today.

The report includes developments in the industry for not only digital mammography, 3D breast tomosynthesis, breast MRI, and breast ultrasound, but also molecular breast imaging, optical imaging and positron emission technologies.

The market for breast imaging is noted as one of the fastest growing in the health care industry. Some of the drivers in this growth include government stimulus, a focus on earlier screening for breast cancer and technological advances that are innovating the breast-imaging portfolio.

Digital mammography is still considered the main work horse of the industry, but breast-specific MRI,  ultrasound and CT are moving into the scope of breast imaging standards.

Hybrid imaging technologies, such as PET/CT, could be considered more appropriate for women with dense breasts and a higher risk of cancer. The meeting of both spectral and photonics technologies is creating a new understanding of cellular and molecular breast structure and functioning.

The biggest drivers of growth in the industry are a rise in breast cancer cases, technological developments focused on reducing false positives in diagnostic breast imaging and emerging markets such as those in the Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific are developing stronger markets.

The biggest challenge to the industry was expected to be inadequate reimbursement, but this is expected to improve over the course of the next several years.