Arthritis treatment market fueled by new technology

May 1, 1997
Pharmaceutical Representative

The number of arthritis patients in the United States is expected to increase from an estimated 37 million in 1995 to about 41.3 million in 2002, according to a report from Frost & Sullivan, a Mountain View, CA-based international consulting firm.

The number of arthritis patients in the United States is expected to increase from an estimated 37 million in 1995 to about 41.3 million in 2002, according to a report from Frost & Sullivan, a Mountain View, CA-based international consulting firm.

The arthritis treatment market totaled $5.8 billion in revenues in 1995. The unmet needs of many arthritis patients and an aging American population all bode well for the market, with revenues expected to reach $6.53 billion in 1998. With strong growth coming from new product introductions, the market could reach $8.22 billion in 2002.

Although the industry has come a long way, many current treatments provide little relief and leave considerable clinical needs unfulfilled. Current treatments that are relatively effective at relieving the major symptoms of arthritic conditions, specifically pain and inflammation, often have adverse side effects, according to the report.

New technologies are expected to bring major changes to the arthritis drugs market. For example, researchers recently discovered two forms of human protein cyclo-oxygenase: one that is mainly responsible for protecting the stomach lining and another that is responsible for inflammation. A few companies are also developing new steroid compounds that they hope will have fewer or less serious side effects than products currently on the market.

While there are a number of factors contributing to the market growth, the loss of patent protection has slowed development in certain segments, specifically the prescription nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs market. This forces companies to introduce generic or over-the-counter versions of their product to extend its life cycle or to establish the product in the market before other generic companies move in, according to the report. PR

The number of arthritis patients in the United States is expected to increase from an estimated 37 million in 1995 to about 41.3 million in 2002, according to a report from Frost & Sullivan, a Mountain View, CA-based international consulting firm.

The arthritis treatment market totaled $5.8 billion in revenues in 1995. The unmet needs of many arthritis patients and an aging American population all bode well for the market, with revenues expected to reach $6.53 billion in 1998. With strong growth coming from new product introductions, the market could reach $8.22 billion in 2002.

Although the industry has come a long way, many current treatments provide little relief and leave considerable clinical needs unfulfilled. Current treatments that are relatively effective at relieving the major symptoms of arthritic conditions, specifically pain and inflammation, often have adverse side effects, according to the report.

New technologies are expected to bring major changes to the arthritis drugs market. For example, researchers recently discovered two forms of human protein cyclo-oxygenase: one that is mainly responsible for protecting the stomach lining and another that is responsible for inflammation. A few companies are also developing new steroid compounds that they hope will have fewer or less serious side effects than products currently on the market.

While there are a number of factors contributing to the market growth, the loss of patent protection has slowed development in certain segments, specifically the prescription nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs market. This forces companies to introduce generic or over-the-counter versions of their product to extend its life cycle or to establish the product in the market before other generic companies move in, according to the report. PR