Medical Elastomers Market size is forecast to reach $11.2 billion by 2026, after growing at a CAGR of 6.4% during 2021-2026. In the medical sector, elastomers are used to optimize the function of a wide variety of pharmaceutical, biotech, medical, and life science applications. Moreover, elastomers are also used in the design of medical products where superior performance and safety are needed most. Growing awareness for better medical facilities and rising demand for medical devices incorporating thermoset elastomers and thermoplastic elastomers are driving the market growth. Moreover, the growing consumption of single-use medical devices like medical tubes and medical bags are also driving the Medical Elastomers Industry growth. Furthermore, the surging demand for medical implants among the aging population is also contributing to the growth of the Medical Elastomers market share globally.
The unprecedented crisis brought by COVID-19 during 2020 continues to have a clear and significant impact on the worldwide workforce, industry, country, and global economy. The pandemic has hindered the Medical Elastomers supply chain, especially the supply of raw material used in producing the medical-grade elastomers. Elastomers are produced using polymer and reinforcing filler. Due to the pandemic, the businesses had to shut down its operation, which leads to the unavailability of raw materials. Moreover, at the peak of the pandemic, the export or import of the elastomers or the raw material had to go through a strict sanitization process and had to stay at docks, and couldn’t be supplied in the market at the time, causing a supply chain disruption, which has also hindered the growth of the market.
Medical Elastomers Market Segment Analysis – By Material
Thermoplastic Elastomers segment held the largest share of more than 50% in the Medical Elastomers Market in 2020. Thermoplastic elastomers are used in many major medical application areas like syringes to gaskets & seals, vial caps, and soft-touch cushions for glucose measuring devices due to their high degree of purity, excellent recyclability, and cost-effectiveness. Moreover, thermoplastic elastomers are also replacing latex and PVC materials, as latex can cause an allergic reaction to some individuals, and PVC emits toxic fumes during manufacturing process. Therefore, the wide use and advantages of Thermoplastic elastomers will further drive the Medical Elastomers market growth.
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Medical Elastomers Market Segment Analysis – By Manufacturing Process
The injection molding segment held the largest share of more than 35% in the Medical Elastomers Market in 2020. The injection molding process can be done with a variety of materials, including thermoset elastomers and polymers. The injection molding process enables the production of high precision complex parts for healthcare and medical applications such as surgical instruments, orthopedics, dental instruments, drug delivery equipment, laboratory equipment, and test tube & other containers. In this process, elastomer compound is continuously supplied into the machine and is injected into the multi-caliber mold through a screw conveyor. When the elastomers compound passes through the nozzle and the sprues, it generates additional friction heat that temporarily reduces the viscosity, supporting optimum mold filling and speeding up the vulcanization process. This process provides various advantages over compression moldings such as high production, low labor costs, and design flexibility. Therefore, the above advantages of injection molding drive its demand in the medical elastomer market.
Medical Elastomers Market Segment Analysis – By Application
The tubing segment held the largest share of more than 25% in the Medical Elastomers Market in 2020. The increasing demand for medical tubes such as single & multi-lumen tubing, catheter tubing, oxygen tubing, blood transport, and delivery tubing in diagnosis treatment in driving the market growth. The increasing prevalence of diseases such as cancer, and cardiovascular that require complex surgical treatment, has increased the demand for minimally invasive procedures, which in turn boosted the demand for elastomers that are ideal for use in catheters and medical tubing. Moreover, medical tubing ensures cost-effectiveness and consumes less time. For example, in urinary catheterization using catheter tubing reduces the time taken for the concerned medical or surgical procedure. Therefore, the growing demand for minimally invasive medical procedures drives the demand for medical tubing in the medical elastomers market.
Medical Elastomers Market Segment Analysis – By Geography
North America held the largest share of more than 40% in the Medical Elastomers market in 2020. Elastomers are widely used in medical applications, due to low toxicity, easy recyclability, and cost-effectiveness. And are used in biomedical applications, such as cardiovascular devices, prosthetic devices, transdermal therapeutic systems, and general medical care products. The increasing demand for medical elastomers in North America can be attributed to the presence of large medical device manufacturing facilities in the region, especially in the United States. The United States has the most advanced medical device sector, due to huge investment in medical research & development. For instance, as per the Research America report, the USA invested $194.2 billion in 2018 which was an increase of 6.4% from 2017. Moreover, the increasing elderly population and growing demand for medical facilities for the treatment of chronic diseases are also driving the growth of the market in this region. Furthermore, the demand for medical tubing has increased in North America for delivering medication, tying off wounds, restricting blood flow, resistance training, and other purposes. Therefore, the advanced medical and healthcare industry coupled with huge investments in the healthcare sector is driving the demand for medical elastomers in the region.
Medical Elastomers Market Drivers
Rising Chronic, Contagious Diseases and The emergence of COVID-19 is Driving the Market Demand
The growing chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer, flu, and the rise of COVID-19 among the population are increasing the demand for medical devices, which is driving the demand for elastomers in medical applications. As per Centres for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), 6 in 10 adults in the United States are suffering from chronic disease. Furthermore, as per National Health Council, 133 million American, which represents 40% of the total population are suffering from chronic disease and is estimated to be 157 million by 2020, which is also contributing towards the demand for medical devices. Medical devices, such as medical tubes, catheters, and syringes are few majorly used medical devices across the globe. And elastomers such as polybutadiene, styrene-ethylene butylene styrene and polyurethane are widely used in the manufacturing of medical devices for their durability, design flexibility, and biocompatibility. Extended working hours, limited physical activity, unhealthy food habits, and lack of immunity are increasing cardiovascular problems, obesity, and high blood pressure among the population, which is also driving the demand for medical devices for diagnosis and prognosis treatment. Whereas, the global outbreak of the COVID-19 further drives the demand for medical devices that in turn propel the market growth. Additionally, owing to the rapidly spreading COVID-19, FDA has been working to facilitate the development and availability of medical products and equipment for use by healthcare providers as expeditiously and safely as possible.
Demand for Safer & Recyclable Polymers in Medical Devices is Driving the Market Growth
Thermoplastic Elastomers (TPEs) have gained immense popularity, due to their high degree of purity and easy recyclability. TPEs are medical-grade raw material and are free of phthalates and latex proteins. TPEs have extremely low extractable and leachable, even when in contact with body fluids. Moreover, TPEs can be reheated and reshaped without releasing any toxic fumes. TPEs can be processed more efficiently and economically, than thermoset rubber, as a result, the old and expired devices can be easily recycled and reduce the cost of production. On the other hand, rising concern about using PVC in medical applications, due to recyclability issues, and incineration is driving the demand for elastomers. As PVC is a chlorinated plastic that forms dioxin during production or when incinerated, and the dioxins that are released can be toxic. Whereas Thermoplastic Elastomers (TPEs) are completely recyclable and can be processed in many ways from injection molding to extrusion, moreover, TPEs are more versatile than PVC. So, therefore, the superior properties of elastomers over PVC and other alternative products are driving the demand for elastomers in medical applications.
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Medical Elastomers Market Challenges
High Investment and Environmental Concern
The major challenge for the Medical Elastomers Market is a requirement of continuous investment for developing a new product, which helps in diagnosing and treating diseases, without harming the patient itself. Developing a new product needs continuous R&D, and need of sophisticated technology, for which a huge investment is required. Therefore, the above factors are restraining the growth of Medical Elastomers. Whereas, disposal of elastomer-based devices proves to be one of the major concerns for the environmental agencies, as the disposal emits a lot of hazardous compounds into the environment. Disposal of these materials can be done either through incineration or through landfills, either of which would create an environmental hazard. The burning of elastomers results in emissions of carbon monoxide and hydrogen cyanide, both of which are harmful to the environment.
Medical Elastomers Market Landscape
Technology launches, acquisitions, and R&D activities are key strategies adopted by players in the Medical Elastomers Market report. Major players in the Medical Elastomers Market are BASF SE, DuPont de Nemours, Inc., Solvay S.A., Eastman Chemical Co., Celanese Corp., Avient Corp., Trelleborg AB, Kuraray Co., Ltd., RTP Co., and Teknor Apex Co., and among others.
In April 2020, Teknor Apex Co. developed a new series of thermoplastic elastomers (TPEs) Medalist MD-30000 Series, which has excellent adhesion to engineering plastic substrates while meeting stringent requirements for use in medical device applications. This new launch will expand Teknor Apex portfolio and will further drive the market growth.
In January 2019, Trelleborg AB, acquired U.S.-based, and privately-owned, Sil-Pro, LLC. Sil-Pro is a manufacturer of silicone and thermoplastic components and assemblies for medical devices. This acquisition expands Trelleborg capabilities for medium volume silicone products and expands its manufacturing footprint, which will further drive the markets.
Asia-Pacific region is projected to witness the highest growth due to the growing population and rise in healthcare investments. China, India, Singapore, and South Korea are the key countries contributing to the market growth in the APAC region.
Need for huge investment, stringent regulations, and unstable economic conditions are hindering the market’s growth.
COVID-19 has both positive and negative impacts on the market. Due to growing, COVID-19 cases drive the demand for medical devices and the global lockdown acts as a challenging factor to the market growth.
Related Reports :
A. Thermoplastic Elastomers Market
B. Silicone Elastomers Market
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