Eye care is one of the important few healthcare specialties that may frequently engage healthy patients. The eye is the primary organ of vision that is located in the orbit, where it occupy one-fifth of total orbital volume. Fascia, fat, blood vessels, extraocular muscles, nerves and lacrimal gland occupy the remaining space of orbital volume. The eye is embryologically an extension of the central nervous system and shares similar physiological and anatomical features with the brain. Both the organs are covered with protective boy walls, have compact fibrous coverings and blood supply to the nervous layer in the retina. Along with these, the eye is well protected from infection by corneal epithelium and the conjunctiva. In addition, the tear film itself contains antimicrobials and the tear flow has a propensity to wash away the infection causing pathogens. Nonetheless, these eye defenses can be violated by improper tearing, trauma or contact leans wearing and can lead to eye infections. The undetected and untreated eye diseases are considered as the major health problems that can lead to blindness and vision loss. The various eye diseases comprise of diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration and cataract. These diseases subsequently cause impaired vision and blindness among the population.
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According to the National Institutes of Health, it was estimated that approximately 40.8 percent of adult population aged above 40 are suffering with diabetic retinopathy and 8.2 percent of population have complex, vision threatening retinopathy in the U.S. in year 2012. Diabetic retinopathy is the most frequently occurring ocular complication of diabetes mellitus and is the leading causative factor for the new blindness cases in the U.S. population with the age group of 20 to 74. Whereas, a leading cause of blindness worldwide namely Glaucoma is a group of eye disorders that can damage the optic nerve and ultimately can lead to blindness and vision loss. It was estimated that in the U.S. approximately 2.2 millions of U.S. population are suffering with open-angle glaucoma, a most familiar type of glaucoma that can lead to blindness. In the United States, with the aging population, the prevalence of patients suffering with eye disorders will expected to increase and continue to be a major health problem that can lead to vision loss and thereby decrease the quality of life, unless these disease left untreated with proper medication.
The primary driving factors for the growth of this market include rise in the geriatric population worldwide, inappropriate diets and rising healthcare spending by the population. Additionally, rising healthcare awareness among the population, increased demand for the natural eye health products and increased tobacco abuse by the world’s population would expected to drive the growth of this market. Geographically, North America accounts for the largest share of the eye health products market followed by the European region. The dominance of North America in this market is seen due to rapidly aging population, increasing life style diseases and presence of various market leaders, which allows easy penetration in the North America region. European eye health products market follows the North America market due to extensive healthcare facilities offered by the European government such as Germany and the U.K. Asia-Pacific region is expected to witness fastest growth rate in the near future due to rising population base and increasing awareness about the eye healthcare.
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Major players operating in this market includes Alcon Laboratories, Valeant Pharmaceuticals, Novartis Consumer Health, Valensa International, Bausch + Lomb, Johnson & Johnson GmbH, Pharm-Allergan GmbH, Ursapharm Arzneimittel GmbH & Co KG, Rohto Pharmaceutical Co Ltd, and others.
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