One of the main postoperative adverse outcomes is pain that causes prolonged hospital stay, physical distress and increasing incidences of readmissions of patients post surgery. The post operative pain is crucial to manage as single analgesics are not able to provide effective pain relief for moderate or severe pain and are also associated with side effects such as vomiting, nausea, bleeding or sedation. The major focus of postoperative pain treatment is not only to reduce pain intensity but also to improve post operative results and increase patient comfort.
The postoperative pain management is the most integral part of the patient treatment because it provides patient comfort, initiates mobilization, lessens the possibility of cardiac, pulmonary and neuropathic pain complications, reduced risk of thrombosis and low cost of care. The postoperative pain treatment consist mainly multimodal analgesic treatment that includes combination of various analgesics that act by various mechanism of actions.
According to National Center for Health Statistics, approximately 100 million surgeries are carried out in United States each year. It’s been perceived that at least 50 million procedures require postoperative pain medication. The major concern with prescription painkillers is that opioids or narcotic drugs tend to obtain habit in patients if not monitored by physician may also result in death due to drug overdose. Hence, the opioids are preferred in severe pain and the dose is decreased over the course of treatment withdrawal.
According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) death due to drug overdose has increased significantly over the last decade, prescription painkiller overdoses killed nearly 15,000 people in the United States in 2008. This is more than 3 times the 4,000 people killed by these drugs in 1999. While in 2010, about 12 million Americans (age 12 or older) reported nonmedical use of prescription painkillers in the past year. Thus, even after constant surveillance of Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and other regulatory authorities the prescription painkiller overdoses are increasing hence, most of the drugs used against postoperative pain are preferred to be non-narcotic after discharge of patients.
The major drivers of postoperative pain market is elevating number of geriatric population, increasing prevalence of lifestyle and senile diseases, high patient awareness about various surgeries and operations, increase in accidents and trauma situations and increasing research and development activities to come with safe and effective pain management treatment.
North America was observed to be the leading postoperative pain market because the annual procedures performed in year 2010 are 51.4 million. Thus, the major drivers of postoperative pain in North America are increase in geriatric population, high public awareness about safe surgeries and post operative results and highly regulated market under constant surveillance of various regulatory authorities. Followed by Europe, it was observed to be the second largest market of postoperative pain. Asia-Pacific and Rest of the World were observed to be the growing market for safe and cost effective postoperative treatments as the emerging economies are developing its healthcare infrastructure along with various industry supportive regulatory reforms that might also include growth of this market.
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The major market players in postoperative pain market are DURECT Corporation, A.P. Pharma, Inc., Novartis AG, Pfizer Inc., Bayer AG, BTG International Ltd., Grunenthal GmbH and others.