Johnson & Johnson has made a breakthrough in the world of contact lenses by obtaining FDA approval for a drug-eluting contact lens. This development is great news for contact lens wearers who suffer from allergic eye itch. Following this achievement, medtech analysts at Needham & Co. have released a report that examines the contact lens market and the intraocular lens market, highlighting their potential for growth.

According to the analysts, both markets have attractive qualities that are somewhat insulated from pure volume growth. They believe that a mix shift to premium products could increase the growth rate of each market to above its historical mid-single digit rate. Needham analysts David Saxon, Mike Matson, and Joseph Conway stated, “We believe both markets are attractive given their respective exposure to growth drivers that are somewhat insulated from pure volume growth.”

The report also covers the firm’s coverage initiation of Alcon, Cooper Companies, RxSight, and STAAR Surgical. It delves into the shift towards premium lenses in the contact lens market, which is expected to drive durable growth. The analysts note that there is an increasing preference for daily contact lenses over monthly and two-week replacement lenses, despite the higher price. Additionally, there is a shift from hydrogel to silicone hydrogel lenses, which come with a premium price.

Furthermore, the report highlights the potential for growth in the intraocular lens market. Intraocular lenses are implanted during cataract procedures to replace the patient’s natural lens. The majority of intraocular lens volume is currently monofocal, but toric and advanced technology intraocular lenses have shown improvement in recent years. These premium lenses can be significantly more expensive than monofocal IOLs, with toric lenses being three to four times the price and advanced technology lenses being six to eight times the price.

The analysts anticipate a sustained mix shift towards premium lenses to be a significant driver of growth in the intraocular lens market. They also mention that Google Trends analytics indicate a positive trend in cataract procedure volumes compared to other surgical specialties.

The report estimates the current value of the intraocular lens market to be around $3 billion. It also highlights specific companies within the market, such as RxSight and Alcon. RxSight has developed a differentiated intraocular lens system that allows for post-procedure adjustments to provide tailored visual correction. Alcon, on the other hand, has achieved a significant milestone with its AcrySof IQ PanOptix Trifocal Intraocular Lens, which has surpassed one million implants worldwide.

In March, Alcon also launched the Clareon family of IOLs in the United States. These IOLs utilize Alcon’s most advanced intraocular lens material and offer consistent visual outcomes and exceptional clarity.

Overall, the report from Needham & Co. sheds light on the potential for growth in both the contact lens market and the intraocular lens market. The shift towards premium products and advancements in technology are expected to drive this growth, providing new opportunities for companies in the medtech industry.

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