Off-loading devices are used to reduce the body pressure on ulcerogenic callus in diabetic patients, which is developed due to poor circulation, lack of feeling in the foot, foot deformities or trauma. These devices aim to eliminate the abnormal pressure points and promote healing. There are two types of off-loading devices such as footwear and total contact casts which vary in cost and effectiveness. Both devices also have their advantages and disadvantages. The effect of these devices also varies from person to person depending on their diabetic condition and use of the device. Off-loading devices are designed in order to be used in post-surgical healing, forefoot trauma, wound, ulceration or any situation requiring a pressure off-load of the forefoot. These devices are not only used for the treatment purpose but also used for the prevention of diabetic foot ulcers. The science behind the use of off-loading devices lies with the understanding of biomechanics and shear forces responsible for diabetic foot ulcers. The need for off-loading devices has increased in patients who along with diabetes are also suffering from obesity.
Advantages in wound healing technology have greatly expanded the ability to effectively manage diabetic foot ulcers and prevent the chances of lower extremity amputations. 85% of the lower extremity amputations are preceded by a diabetic foot ulcer and can be preventable. Use of off-loading devices also has the potential to substantially reduce the overall healthcare burden of diabetic foot ulcers.
Off-Loading Devices Market: Drivers & Restraints
Improvement in the concerns about diabetes management, screening and foot care promote the use of off-loading devices. Also, rise in the number of diabetic population globally which is now more than 450 million may also lead to the increase in the cases of diabetic foot ulcers, thus fuelling the adoption of off-loading devices. In addition to this, increase in the availability as well as variability of off-loading devices also promotes the market growth. Some of the factors limiting the market include ignorance of diabetic foot care and associated high cost of the equipment. Unavailability of these assisting products in the under-developed and developing countries as well as poor diabetic management restrict the global market growth of off-loading devices.
There are currently numerous off-loading devices that are available varied by the material used, complexity and cost. Total contact cast off-loading devices have better healing properties but they are more costly than the footwear and not afforded by all. Opportunity for market players lies with the expanding their product range based on the off-loading capabilities and further research. There is a growing need for off-loading devices and the market opportunity lies in the development of economical and easy to wear devices.
Off-Loading Devices Market: Regional Outlook
Geographically, the market for off-loading devices can be segmented into five regions, North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Middle East & Africa. North America is expected to have high share in the global off-loading devices market owing to the available funding by federal and state government as well as favorable reimbursement scenarios. This is followed by the European market because of the developed healthcare infrastructure, routine healthcare check-ups and awareness about the disease. This is followed by the Asia-Pacific market. It represents a huge market potential, however several factors restrict the market growth in this region. Latin America followed by MEA is expected to have the least market share and growth rate over the forecast period due to the non-availability of these services in most of the countries as well as poor healthcare infrastructure.
Off-Loading Devices Market: Key Players
Examples of some of the key players in the global off-loading devices market are DARCO International, PulseFlow Technologies, Hollister Incorporated, BSN medical, Integra Life Sciences Corp., Posey Products, LLC, DeRoyal Industries, Inc., DM Systems, Inc., PPL Biomechanics, and Repton Medical, among others.
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