Orthopedic robotic surgical systems are specialized to improve surgical outcomes for orthopedic surgeries. They aid in various procedures such as partial knee replacement, total knee replacement, and total hip replacement, to ultimately help surgeons perform procedures more consistently and accurately than with manual techniques. Unlike the dominant status of Intuitive Surgical in the general surgery robotics market, all major orthopedic manufacturers join the battle in the orthopedic robotics market.
The major brands of orthopedic robots include Stryker Mako, Zimmer Biomet ROSA RECON, DePuy Synthes VELYS, and Smith & Nephew CORI. The CORI, Mako, and ROSA RECON can be used for partial and total knee replacements, as well as total hip replacements. The VELYS can only be used for total knee replacements. According to GlobalData analysis, Stryker Mako is by far the largest player in the US, bolstered by years of sales and early entry into the market. Mako has a robotic cutting tool attached to its robotic arm, with a focus on haptics. The system requires a pre-operative computed tomography (CT) image that is used to generate a 3D model of the knee to assist the physician with pre-surgical planning.
Zimmer Biomet ROSA RECON is the second player in the market. Its robotic arm helps to accurately place cutting jigs that are pinned to the patient’s bone to help guide the surgeon’s cutting tool. ROSA RECON uses X-rays, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), or even works on an image-free basis. Smith & Nephew CORI, which has the smallest footprint of the four systems, controls less than 20% of the orthopedic robotics market. Notably, the share of DePuy Synthes VELYS has increased greatly in the past year, from less than 10% to over 20% in 2022. Affordable pricing can be one of the major reasons to explain the quick adoption of VELYS.
Price-setting determines a product’s profit margin, as well as market share and the ease of making sales or the difficulty in gaining adoption in the highly competitive orthopedic robotics market. The capital expense of orthopedic robots is tremendous. The average selling prices (ASPs) of all four systems are from $480,000 to over $1.1 million in the US. DePuy Synthes VELYS is more budget-friendly compared with other brands and is 56% cheaper than Mako. Service and support costs for orthopedic robots also vary depending on system configuration. The service cost of VELYS is approximately 40% less than Mako.
According to a survey by the American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons, over half of the captured membership claimed robotics are used for marketing purposes, having pressures from other facilities that provide robotic surgery options. When nonclinical factors greatly contribute to the decision of adopting a new orthopedic robot, lower pricing may be effective enough in persuading surgeons to move away from leading brands. The ASP of Mako has declined by nearly 9% in 2022. GlobalData expects the capital expense of orthopedic robots will continually drop in the future due to the fierce competition.