Intraoperative neuromonitoring (IONM) refers to a key technology used during surgical procedures. The use of IONM serves to provide additional information and helps to maintain nerve integrity, brain function, and neural pathways.
Intraoperative neuromonitoring is mainly used for a few medical specialties. These include neurosurgery, ENT surgery, emergency surgery, visceral surgery, cardiothoracic surgery, orthopedics, vascular surgery, and general surgery. The use of IONM helps to reduce risk of damage of neurophysiologically-relevant nerve structures at the time of surgical intervention or possible damage of nerve function as a result of improper positioning of the patient. With the help of targeted neurostimulation, nerve structures can be spotted and potential damage prevented by adopting to surgical approach. This allows surgeons to focus on optimizing the intervention whilst maintaining function.
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Prior to the development of equipment and techniques for IONM, interventionists carried out a simple visual check to determine if the muscle in question shrunk after neurostimulation. These methods have become obsolete and no longer meet the demands of today’s operating room.
Today, intraoperative neuromonitoring mainly involves two methods – continuous monitoring and neuromonitoring for localization. Continuous monitoring involves clinicians to monitor patient tabular data in real-time to observe changes to the morphology of the data. Continuous monitoring includes modalities of EMG, AEP, EEG, SEP, MEP, and VEP.
On the other hand, neuromonitoring for localization involves use of targeted stimulation that enables the surgeon to spot critical nerve structures in the area of surgery. Using this, surgeons have a better spatial orientation and use targeted neurostimulation.
Intraoperative neuromonitoring has been gaining traction to reduce the incidence of stroke and paralysis in major vascular interventions.
Global Intraoperative Neuromonitoring (IONM) Market: Overview
On account of the increasing care toward patient safety, the demand for intraoperative neuromonitoring has continued to rise at a steady pace. The burden of healthcare costs on patients and their desire to avoid readmission have upped the adoption of intraoperative neuromonitoring around the world. Intraoperative neurophysiological monitoring (IONM) uses electrophysiological techniques such as electromyography (EMG), electroencephalography (EEG), and evoked potentials to effectively monitor the integrity of neural structures such as spinal cords, nerves, and certain parts of brain. IONM is mostly conducted to provide functional guidance to surgeons besides reducing risk to patients suffering from iatrogenic damage.
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Global Intraoperative Neuromonitoring (IONM) Market: Key Trends
As per findings of the World Health Organization (WHO), nearly 80% of disorders leading to disabling conditions are neurological. Intraoperative monitoring has thus become imperative in neurosurgery as it offers early warning with regards to sensory & motor functions during a surgery. It has therefore enabled surgeons yield better results by eliminating post-operative neurophysiological deficits. Safer surgery consequently results in reduced risk and intervention time. On account of these benefits the demand for intraoperative neuromonitoring has surged exponentially across the healthcare sector.
This, coupled with, favorable reimbursement scenario especially in developed nations is augmenting market prospects for the future. Also the market players are focusing on strategic collaborations to expand their footprint and offer innovations. These calculated steps witnessed in the global intraoperative neuromonitoring market will act in favor of its growth in the coming years.
Global Intraoperative Neuromonitoring (IONM) Market: Market Potential
Recently, SpecialtyCare renowned as a leading provider of surgical services, perfusion, and intraoperative neuromonitoring acquired Sentient, a prominent IONM provider in October 2016. With this transaction SpecialtyCare was able expand their leadership as one of the most comprehensive providers of patient-centered outsourced IONM services to hospitals, surgeons, health systems, and surgery centers.
Following the acquisition, SpecialtyCare has increased the overall number of intraoperative neuromonitoring associates to support cases in the U.S., which is also its existing market, besides expanding coverage across the Atlantic States. Such mergers and acquisitions will have a positive impact on the market in letting it expand its distribution network across markets yet to be explored. Leading players in the global intraoperative neuromonitoring market are also looking to extend strategic collaboration with counterparts across emerging nations to expand their overall footprint.
Global Intraoperative Neuromonitoring (IONM) Market: Regional Outlook
Regionally, opportunities witnessed by the intraoperative neuromonitoring market in North America are highly lucrative. Besides this, considerable growth potential exists for the market in Europe as well. Considering improving reimbursement scenario across North America and Europe, these regions are expected to remain at the global market’s fore also in the coming years. Besides this, a majority of developed countries have clearly defined procedure and codes for patients and insurance companies, which have made reimbursement processes easier and more convenient. Such well-defined guidelines has resulted in better outcome, thus benefiting hospitals and patients alike and accelerating the pace of gains for intraoperative neuromonitoring market in turn.
A large number of neurological centers in the U.S. are recommending the use of intraoperative neuromonitoring in order to bridge the manpower gap and cater to the rising demand. Hospitals are encouraging physicians besides the doctorate-level IONM providers to get trained and certified from institutions such as the American Board of Nuclear Medicine. With the healthcare system making an effort to encourage the use of IONM, its demand is expected to surge further in the coming years. In addition, the market is expected to witness rising opportunities in Asia Pacific in the near future.
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Global Intraoperative Neuromonitoring (IONM) Market: Competitive Landscape
Some of the most prominent enterprises operating in the global intraoperative neuromonitoring market are Biotronic NeuroNetwork, Natus Medical Incorporated, SpecialtyCare, NeuroMonitoring Technologies, LLC, Accurate Monitoring, Medtronic, Sentient Medical Systems, and NuVasive Inc.
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