Best-selling Ophthalmic Drugs in China | Market Wrap 2021

by Grace Wang Jan 10, 2022

The year 2021 has seen a remarkable growth of the ophthalmic drug market in China. The market size of chemical drugs for eye diseases is estimated to exceed 3.5 billion yuan (circa 549 million USD), with a year-on-year growth of 1.89%.1

Ophthalmic Drugs: Market Numbers 

Among the best-selling eye disease drugs, Naphazoline Hydrochloride, Chlorphenamine Maleate and Vitamin B12 Eye Drops took the champion with over 400 million yuan (about 62.76 million USD) in sales value.

There are 13 ophthalmic drugs which realizes more than 100 million yuan (about 15.68 million USD) in sales. The top four are all for relieving dry or tired eyes. Bendazac Lysine Eye Drops, for treating early-stage senile cataract, ranked the fifth. The other eight are mainly antibiotic eye drops.

13 Ophthalmic Drugs with More than 100 million Yuan Sales Value in China in 2021

Source: Menet Database

No.

Drug (Generic Name)

Therapeutic Area

Sales Value (million)

1

Naphazoline Hydrochloride, Chlorphenamine Maleate and Vitamin B12 Eye Drops

Tired eyes, conjunctival congestion, and eye irritation

≥ 400

2

Sodium Hyaluronate Eye Drops

Dry eye syndrome

≥ 300

3

Compound Aspartate, Vitamin B6 and Dipotassium Glycyrrhetate Eye Drops

Tired eyes and conjunctival congestion

≥ 300

4

Polyvinyl Alcohol Eye Drops

Dry eyes

≥ 200

5

Bendazac Lysine Eye Drops

Early-stage senile cataract

≥ 100

6

Ofloxacin Eye Drops

Eye infections, conjunctivitis, and keratitis

≥ 100

7

Erythromycin Eye Ointment

≥ 100

8

Levofloxacin Eye Drops

≥ 100

9

Levofloxacin Hydrochloride Eye Drops

≥ 100

10

Chlortetracycline Hydrochloride Eye Ointment

≥ 100

11

Chloramphenicol Eye Drops

≥ 100

12

Compound Chondroitin Sulfate Eye Drops

Dry and tired eyes

≥ 100

13

Compound Allantoin Vitamin B6-E and Aminoethylsulfonic Acid Eye Drops

Dry eyes and ocular discomfort

≥ 100

Notes: The same type of eye drops produced by different companies are counted as one type under one generic name.

If categorizing drugs by their companies, Mentholatum's Compound Aspartate, Vitamin B6 and Dipotassium Glycyrrhetate Eye Drops topped the list with over 200 million yuan in sales value.

Seven Ophthalmic Drug Products with More than 100 million Yuan Sales Value in China in 2021  

Source: Menet Database

No.

Drug

Company (HQ Location)

Sales Value (million)

1

Compound Aspartate, Vitamin B6 and Dipotassium Glycyrrhetate Eye Drops

Mentholatum (China) Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd. (US)

≥ 200

2

Polyvinyl Alcohol Eye Drops

Hubei Yuanda Tiantianming Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd. (China)

≥ 200

3

Naphazoline Hydrochloride, Chlorphenamine Maleate and Vitamin B12 Eye Drops

Shandong Bausch & Lomb Freda Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (Canada)

≥ 200

4

Sodium Hyaluronate Eye Drops

URSAPHARM Arzneimittel GmbH (Germany)

≥ 100

5

Levofloxacin Eye Drops

Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (Japan)

≥ 100

6

Bendazac Lysine Eye Drops

Zhejiang Shapuaisi Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (China)

≥ 100

7

Sodium Hyaluronate Eye Drops

Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (Japan)

≥ 100

Outlook: China's Ophthalmic Market Has Huge Potential

1. The eye care needs are enormous and growing.

China has numerous eye disease patients. As the Chinese population continues aging and the increasing use of electronic devices, the ophthalmic market shows great potential of ophthalmic medical services, devices, and medicines.

Main Eye Diseases in China in 2018

Source: TF securities

Disease Categories

Patients (million)

Main Treatment

Inducing Non-blindness

Ametropia

Myopia or near-sightedness

630

Corneal Reshaping Contact Lenses (for patients aged 8 to 18); laser eye surgery (for patients aged 18 to 50)

Hyperopia or farsightedness  

70

/

Dry eye syndrome

Aqueous tear deficiency (ATD)

141

Artificial tears, Cyclosporin Eye Drops, etc.

Meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD)

101

Mixed dry eye

48

Not Inducing Blindness

Cataract

Congenital cataract

76.35

Artificial intraocular lens implantation surgery

Acquired cataract

133

Glaucoma

Open-angle glaucoma

1.12

Eye pressure

Angle-closure glaucoma

9.8

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD)

Exudative AMD

3

Anti–vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)

Dry AMD

18.4

/

China's ophthalmic drug market, though smaller than those of ophthalmic services and devices, still has impressive sales value numbers. With considerable size and potential, the Chinese market is attracting international eye medicine makers.

RELATED: Ophthalmic Drug Market in China Attracts Increasing Attention

Santen Pharmaceutical decided to build manufacturing sites in Suzhou, a city in eastern China. As Mr. Takayuki Yamada, the company's head of China business, says, their business in China is increasing and has taken up 60% of those in Asia-Pacific.3

2. The Chinese government supports eye health with the social healthcare insurance system.

China encourages eye medicine R&D and applies R&D achievements to clinical settings, as shown in the National Eye Health Plan During the 13th Five Year Period (2016-2020) and Comprehensive Implementation Plan for Preventing and Controlling Myopia in Children and Teenagers.

China also includes more eye medicines into the national reimbursement drug list (NRDL) to make the drugs affordable to patients under the social healthcare insurance system. The latest 2021 NRDL adds the Cyclosporin Eye Drops (II), a drug for treating dry eye syndrome.

RELATED: China Adds 74 Drugs to National Reimbursement Drug List (NDRL)

For more market information and regulatory compliance services, welcome to contact BaiPharm. BaiPharm is pharmaceutical regulatory consulting service provider with multiple strengths:

  • Experienced in preparing ANDA, CTA/IND, BLA, BE studies, MRCTs, NDA documentation; filing DMFs for APIs, excipients, and packaging materials.

  • Having a global network of offices, business representatives and experts across China, Japan, South Korea, the US, and Europe to offer 24-hour services to clients.

  • Providing multi-language translation services covering Chinese, English, Korean, Japanese, German, and Italian.

Grace Wang
ChemLinked Regulatory Analyst
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