The $3.0 billion hematology market is forecasted to grow with a 2% CAGR between 2012 and 2014. The hematology market, which includes revenues from hematology instruments and testing products, as well as revenues from flow cytometry instrumentation and testing products, represents 7% of the global IVD market. Hematology tests are used to examine different parts of the blood, including tests to determine white blood cell counts, red blood cell counts, complete blood cell (CBC) counts, platelet counts, the amount of hemoglobin in the blood, and other measurements.
Despite a high number of automated CBC analyzers in use, a significant percentage of samples require a manual cell differential count of blood specimens under a microscope. Frequently, a manual count is required due to the inability of automated CBC and differential analyzers to discriminate complex morphology, especially the shape of abnormal cells, such as immature white blood cells or the presence of diseased cells. It is important, though, to accurately detect the presence of immature white blood cells since they are often associated with conditions such as leukemia, infection, inflammation, or tissue injury.
Accordingly, manufacturers are working to decrease the number of manual reviews that are required through improvements in analyzer accuracy.