2008 was supposed to be Medipattern’s (TSXV:MKI) big year.
The Toronto based company, which designs medical imaging software, went public in 2005, then soared to $1.64 in the first days of 2008 on the promise of a new medical imaging system for breast cancer detection.
When the tangle of regulatory hurdles combined with the worst recession in a generation, it tripped up the company’s plan to commercialize its technology. Shares of Medipattern plunged to nearly a nickel before staging a modest recovery in 2011.
This year, however, Medipattern investors should begin to see real revenue for the first time. That’s because, last February, the company received FDA clearance for Visualize: Vascular. The product can help a physician assess vascular disease using ultrasound imaging by performing 3D rendering of the carotid artery.
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Visualize:Vascuar is Medipattern’s second attempt to commercialize in the medical imaging space.
The company originally attempted to use an existing CPT code for its breast ultrasound computer aided detection system: B-CAD™ but was met with criticism by the American College of Radiology Reimbursement Committee.
CPT codes are numbers assigned to every task and service a medical practitioner may provide to a patient including medical, surgical and diagnostic services in the United States. They are then used by insurers to determine the amount of reimbursement that a practitioner will receive.
The CPT code debacle forced the company out of the breast ultrasound and into the vascular market, which has existing and established CPT codes that Visualize: Vascular falls under.
Medipattern is now rolling out Visualize:Vascular in a number market sectors: vascular surgery, cardiology and radiology, with an eye towards which would be the most direct path to revenue. CEO Jeff Collins says the company has added staff and resources on the commercial side of the company in anticipation of a national rollout in 2012.
Market research firm Global Industry Analysts says the global market for 3D medical imaging will reach (US) $5.9 Billion by 2017. The firm says the growth of the market, which they anticipate will be led by the Asia-Pacific market with a compound annual growth rate of 17.5%, is driven by increased affordability and the ability of the devices to manage large amounts of data.