According to a new industry research report published by Credence Research “3D Printing in Healthcare (Polyjet, Stereolithography (SL), Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM), Electron Beam Melting, Selective Laser Sintering (SLS), Others) industry – Growth, Share, Opportunities, Competitive Analysis and Forecast 2016 – 2023”, the global healthcare 3D printing industry is estimated to expand with a CAGR of 17.5% from 2016 to 2023.
3D printing, also called as additive manufacturing, refers to a process of making three-dimensional (3D) solid objects using a digital model. In 3D printing, the object is prepared by placing down successive layers of material. Since the introduction of 3D printing technology in 1984, the technology is steadily becoming popular across various applications such as jewelry, consumer goods, industrial design, aerospace, construction, automotive and others. 3D printing technology is projected to greatly impact the healthcare sector in various applications including non-implantable and implantable medical devices. Apart from precise manufacturing, 3D printing enables cost-effective and customized production of medical devices. 3D printing of human tissues through layer-by-layer deposition of cells is the most promising prospects of this technology in the healthcare sector.
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The overall rising healthcare IT industry is the most significant factor proliferating the adoption of 3D printing technology in the medical sector. Healthcare organizations are now increasingly turning towards implementing advanced technological solutions in their practice with an aim to deliver better medical service. 3D printers enable precise production of various prosthetics, wearable devices and other internal organs. Due to high accuracy of 3D printers, the possibility of human error is minimized thereby reducing the overall risk of medical treatment. High initial cost is major barrier for the 3D printing industry in the healthcare sector. Another significant challenge for the industry players is compliance of their products with the FDA regulations.
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Similar to the overall 3D printing industry, the 3D printing in healthcare industry is highly fragmented in nature with large number of players striving to establish their remarkable presence in the industry. Healthcare sector is regarded as the most promising sector for the 3D printing technology. As a result, the companies operating in the industry are making immense efforts in order to provide cutting edge solutions. Acquisition is expected to emerge among the most prominent trends in the industry. For instance, in April 2014, 3D Systems, Inc. acquired U.S.-based 3D bio-printing company Medical Modeling, Inc., for expanding its presence in the healthcare 3D printing sector. These companies primarily compete on the basis of technology, ease of process and providing full suite of products and services.
3D printing for manufacturing end-use products rather than simply prototyping
Focus on gaining expertise in different 3D printing technologies
Acquisition of other players for strengthening technological position as well as global presence
Focus on specific applications such as residential, automotive and healthcare
3D printed models of organs or body parts for better training and practice for complex surgeries
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