Bladder Cancer Statistics
According to the National Cancer Institute (NCI), bladder cancer is the sixth most common cancer in the United States and the third most common cancer in men, with over 81,000 new cases diagnosed annually (380,000 worldwide). It is estimated that approximately 600,000 people are currently living with bladder cancer in the United States, generating over 1,000,000 physician consultations per year, and that over 17,000 individuals die from the disease each year. Finding bladder cancer early improves the chances that it can be treated successfully. Low grade non-muscle bladder cancer has a recurrence rate of 40%. High grade non-muscle bladder cancer has a recurrence rate of 70%. The average recurrence rate for this type of cancer is nearly 50%, which is one of the highest recurrence rates of all cancers. *
*Data from the National Cancer Institute website
Demand for Minimally Invasive Procedures
Over the last 50 years, worldwide interest in minimally invasive surgeries has increased because they reduce patients’ pain, speed recovery and reduce the overall costs to the healthcare system. Simultaneously, there has been an intense effort to find new methods to detect and treat cancer. Endoscopies provide an answer for both, and the demand has increased significantly. However, the limited ability of today’s endoscopy instruments to distinguish cancer from normal tissue is a well-documented problem. The global endoscopy market is currently valued at $46B. Imagin will be focusing on a $500M segment of this market.
“Endoscopy” simply means, “looking inside” the body. The endoscope is a medical device with an attached light source used by physicians and surgeons to visualize suspicious masses in the hollow organs of the body, such as the gastrointestinal tract, esophagus, lungs, urinary tract and uterus. An endoscopy procedure is often performed when other tools, such as an MRI, X-ray, or CT scan, are considered inappropriate or unclear. Endoscopies are commonly performed to diagnose cancer, take tissue samples for biopsies, and to remove the cancer when it’s confirmed. The patient may be fully conscious or under general anesthetic. Cystoscopy is the procedure that uses an endoscope, referred to as a cystoscope, and allows doctors to examine the lining of the bladder and the tube that carries urine out of the body.