As the early days of robotic surgery give way to more precise control and better patient outcomes, early pioneers like Intuitive Surgical Inc. are seeing increased pressure from large companies like Johnson & Johnson and Medtronic PLC, which have made major M&A investments to crack into the market in recent years.
Intuitive’s da Vinci system was first approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2000 for urology. Since then, the number of companies staking their future on the growing space — either in general surgery or orthopedic — has only grown.
Analytics firm GlobalData reported in November 2019 that the surgical robot market is expected to reach $275 billion by 2025, almost tripling in size compared to 2018 when the market accounted for $98 billion.
“The reason for this incredible growth rate is that robotics can revolutionize almost any type of surgery, including cardiology, oncology and neurology,” GlobalData Data Scientist James Spencer said. “It is just a matter of how the technologies can be applied.”
Hospitals are adopting the surgical robots at increasing rates, with general surgery procedures using the da Vinci system rising 32% from 2017 to 2018. GlobalData said robotics is one of the most promising technologies changing the face of healthcare.
A representative from George Washington Hospital in Washington, D.C., told S&P Global Market Intelligence that surgeons there have performed more than 6,600 procedures in urology; colorectal; general surgery; gynecology; oncology; and ear, nose and throat. Companies that make these robots also make the implants and surgical tools that come with them.
By Michael Gibney | S&P Global
Image Credit: Intuitive Surgical