Ureteroscope is an endoscopic device used in the diagnosis and treatment of kidney stones. It was first discovered by the pioneer in Urology Hugh Hampton Young in 1912. It is a thin tube like fiber with an illuminating light and lens to view, which is passed through the urethra to the bladder and then into the ureter for the diagnosis. The device helps to understand the position of the kidney stone and also to push back the kidney stone, into the kidney, present in the ureter or near urinary bladder. The Ureteroscopic procedure takes an hour and patient is discharged on the same day. The procedure is carried out in either of the two manners: one is to remove the stone with the small basket attached at the end of the wire inserted through an extra channel in Ureteroscope and the other is to break the stone into small pieces with a laser beam passed through a fiber, further to be excreted through urine. The men are likely to undergo Ureterscopy at an early age of 30-40 years as compared to women, who experience in the later stage of life. The risk factors associated with ureteroscopy are injury to ureter, urinary tract infection, bleeding and abdominal pain.
Usage of Ureteroscope can be segmented according to the product, end users and geography. According to the product the Ureteroscope are Flexible Ureteroscope, Semi – Rigid Ureteroscope or Rigid Ureteroscopes. The Flexible Ureteroscopes are beneficial for small ureters reachable till renal pelvis and maximizes visualization with easy stone fragmentation, whereas with Rigid and Semi – Rigid Ureteroscopes are used for easy insertion into tight ureters and for easy removal of stone. The stone procedures rates have increased with Flexible and Semi – rigid Ureteroscopes over years and in 95% cases the patients are stone free with a single procedure. The end users segmentation is hospitals, Urology clinics, Endoscopic clinics and diagnostic centers. According to geography the Ureteroscope market is segmented in North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa.
The sedentary lifestyle and unhealthy food habits are the driving factors for the increase in the number of Ureteroscopic procedures. Changing lifestyle, exposure to high temperatures, less consumption of water, high intake of alcohol and aerated drinks, large portion of diet rich in uric acid such as animal meat and eggs, increased oxalate consumption and sodium, lack of exercise and diet not including vegetables, plant proteins and fruits are the major the drivers for the increase in the number of kidney stones, thereby increasing the usage of Ureteroscope. Apart from the rising number of cases for Ureteroscopy, the future is Robotic Ureteroscopy and use of peptide-coated iron oxide based microparticles. In Robotic Ureteroscopy, the robotic station controls the flexible Ureteroscope while the surgeon thereby controls the Ureteroscope by the joystick device and on the other hand in the peptide-coated iron oxide based microparticles, iron oxide microparticles selectively adhere to calcium stone fragments for quicker removal intraoperative stone.
The usage of Ureterscope depends on the number cases affected with kidney stone. Incidence of kidney stone is increasing globally irrespective of age, sex and race. There is an increase in the number of cases of per year in North America and Europe. In United States alone the Ureteroscopic procedures have increased by 83% over a decade. In the Middle East the prevalence of uric acid stones are higher than calcium containing stones, since the diet there is rich in oxalates. The men are likely to undergo Ureterscopy at an early age of 30-40 years as compared to women, who experience in the later stage of life. In South East Asia the incidence of kidney stone is higher due to cultural practice of chewing betel quid. The highest risk of kidney stone has been reported in Asian countries. Incidence of bladder stones due to malnutrition, in early stage of life, has reduced as social conditions improve in the Asian countries such as India, China and Indonesia.
The key players in the Ureteroscopic market include Boston Scientific Corporation, Stryker, Olympus, Karl Storz GmbH & Co. KG, Richar Wolf, Hoya Corporation, Pentax and Fuji amongst the other players in the Ureteroscopic market.
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