France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom, will expand modestly through 2022 driven by the aging population and the increasing popularity of the laparoscopic technique. One unique feature of the European laparoscopic device will be the rapid adoption of bariatric surgery. While growth has stagnated in the United States, bariatric surgery in Europe will expand at a 6 percent compound annual growth rate through 2022, representing the fastest-growing procedure type. This can be largely attributed to the fact that bariatric surgery is at an earlier stage of adoption in Europe, as well as recent updates to European guidelines that highlight the positive impact bariatric surgery can have on diabetic patients.
- Bariatric surgery in France: The French have widely adopted bariatric surgery to treat obesity. Although France has a relatively low obesity rate, more bariatric surgeries are performed in the country relative to any of the other European countries covered in this report; bariatric procedure growth was also nearly double the European average in 2013. These trends are largely due to better reimbursement for bariatric surgery in France.
- Bariatric surgery in the U.K.: Despite the growth of bariatric surgery in Europe overall, total bariatric procedure volumes declined in the U.K. in 2013 and remain very low relative to the size of the obese population in the country. While the exact reason for the 2013 downturn is not clear, experts have speculated that obese individuals in lower socio-economic groups may be poorly utilizing health care services and that budget restrictions and other factors may play a role.
- Gastric bands: Another interesting development in the bariatric space is the December 2013 spin-off of Allergan’s obesity intervention business, including the LAP-BAND gastric band, to Apollo Endosurgery. Although sales of the LAP-BAND had been declining in recent years, Apollo Endosurgery—which has developed other innovative devices to assist with bariatric procedures, such as the OverStitch Endoscopic Suturing System—has said that it will pursue product improvements and clinical studies to rekindle growth.