The global 3D medical imaging market is expected to experience significant growth and reach $3.9 billion by 2012, according to research from Global Industry Analysts Inc.

Representing the largest market, European sales are estimated to be $935 million in 2008. Asia-Pacific is the fastest-growing 3D medical imaging market, increasing at an CAGR of 20% over the 2000-2010 period, while the United States is the single largest 3D medical imaging market, accounting for an estimated 34.6% share in 2008.

Three-dimension medical imaging, which allows clinicians to view high quality 3D images in real time, is emerging as a significant aspect of medical diagnosis, according to the report. Technological advancement associated with 3D medical imaging systems, such as MR and CT, visualization techniques, and procedures constitutes a principal factor driving growth in the worldwide market.

The number of 3D medical imaging procedures performed increased, as well as the number of 3D modalities sold. This trend has led to increased acceptance and use of 3D visualization techniques, as 3D systems are rapidly shifting from UNIX to PC-based (NT) workstations.