Breast pumps refer to the medical devices regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) used by the lactating mothers to ensure uninterrupted milk supply to their infants when away from home. Breast pumps based on the mode of operation are classified into four major types namely manual, single electric, double electric and hospital grade breast pumps. Based on the design, there are two main types of breast pumps available; closed and open systems.
Open systems do not contain a barrier between the milk collection kit and the pump tubing due to which collected milk is susceptible to contamination, while closed pumps prevent contamination due to the presence of a barrier between the collection kit and pump tubing. Currently, majority of the breast pumps available represent closed systems. Changing lifestyles and increasing number of women prioritizing their career along with their child, have emerged as the major factors impacting the growth of this market. On the other hand, high cost of the devices followed by risk of contamination might limit the market growth. Increasing disposable incomes of respective nations will further propel the market growth.
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Recommendation of breast pumps is majorly dependent on the frequency of breastfeeding; Double electric breast pumps are the most preferred pumps for frequent breastfeeding as it ensures efficient milk expression with less time consumption. While single electric breast pumps are the most preferred pumps over manual pumps owing to powerful motor capacity and variable suction pressures. Hospital grade breast pumps are usually recommended in the initial phase of breastfeeding mainly to establish milk supply and get acquainted with the use of pumps. These pumps are by far the most superior types of breast pumps due to powerful motor, effective pumping capacity and can support multiple users.
Distribution channel of personal grade breast pumps varies from hospital grade breast pumps; durable medical equipment (DME) supplier or retailer or online sales channel forms the base of personal grade breast pumps, while hospital grade pumps reaches to the end users via hospitals. Electric breast pumps are preferred over manual breast pumps due to several beneficial features such as electric motor support, effective milk expression and less time consumption.
The global market for breast pumps is analyzed from two perspectives; product type and geography. Manual, single electric, double electric and hospital grade breast pumps are the four major product types. Single electric breast pumps market is the largest market in 2013 owing to the reasonable price and several benefits over the manual pumps. In terms of volume, manual breast pumps constitute the leading market segment owing to its low cost and easy availability.
Double electric breast pumps market segment is anticipated to be the fastest growing segment owing to best option available after hospital grade breast pumps. This is attributed to certain features such as easy and efficient milk expression solution for mothers who have to express milk several times a day and on a daily basis. In addition, these pumps are available with adjustable suction cycles; they start with shorter but quicker sucks in order to accelerate the letdown response, followed by longer, deeper and slower sucks.
Geographically, breast pumps market is studied for four regions: North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Rest of the World. These regions are further analyzed by country. In terms of Revenue, North America accounted for the largest market share in 2013, owing to increasing breastfeeding rates and increasing awareness about breastfeeding. In terms of volume, North America leads the breast pumps market. Key players operating in the global breast pumps market include Medela AG, Ameda AG, Pigeon Corporation, Royal Philips Electronics NV, NUK USA LLC and Lansinoh Laboratories, Inc.
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