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Cancer Cachexia Market Size, Share & Covid-19 Impact Analysis, By Product (Progestogens, Corticosteroids, Combination Therapies, and Others), By Distributional Channel (Hospital Pharmacy, Retail Pharmacy, and Online Pharmacy), and Regional Forecast, 2020-2032

Last Updated: July 01, 2024 | Format: PDF | Report ID: FBI103262



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The global cancer cachexia market size was USD 2.02 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 3.76 billion by 2032, exhibiting a CAGR of 5.0% during the forecast period (2020-2032).

According to the data published by National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), the prevalence of cachexia is estimated to be 80.0% among the advanced stage cancer patients. Cachexia is responsible for around 20.0% deaths among cancer patients globally. It is a wasting syndrome characterized by weight loss, anorexia, asthenia and anemia among patients. It is usually associated with chronic diseases such as cancer, chronic renal failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), HIV, and others. Cancer-induced cachexia is associated with the presence of tumors. According to the Cancer Cachexia Hub, this condition affects an estimated 1.3 million cancer patients in the U.S. alone each year. It is the most common manifestation of the advanced malignant disease, leading to higher mortality among patients. This disorder adversely affects the patient’s ability to fight against infections and withstand treatment by chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic: Decline in Diagnosis Rate of Cancer Patients

The outbreak of COVID-19 has rapidly escalated into a global pandemic. Patients with chronic diseases such as cancer are at high risk of infection by COVID-19, since these patients tend to have multiple comorbidities such as cachexia and are often immunosuppressed by the condition of their disease and on-going treatment. For instance, according to a retrospective analysis of 355 patients who died of COVID-19 in Italy, 20.0% of those patients were suffering from cancer. Thus, several medical associations have issued guidelines for both, cancer patients and healthcare workers. They have suggested the use of Telehealth as a medium to provide treatment and supportive care to cancer patients.

However, a decline in the diagnosis rate of cancer patients has been reported during this outbreak of COVID-19. According to a survey conducted in the U.S., tumor marker tests for cancer reported an estimated 22.0% decline in March and April 2020. A similar decline was observed in various clinical settings in different countries for oncology in-vitro tests. Although the impact on diagnosis of new cancer patients is short-term, the COVID-19 pandemic is projected to slightly disrupt the growth of the market in 2020.


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Growing Shift towards Combinational Therapies is a Prominent Trend

In many cases, the traditional methods employed to treat the patients with single drug intervention have resulted in limited clinical outcomes. Also, due to the lack of approved drugs for the condition, it is observed that the healthcare professionals are turning towards combination therapies for treatment that includes both pharmacological and non-pharmacological therapies. Clinical trials have shown marked improvement in lean body mass (LBM) of patients being treated with combination therapies. Thus, such results, along with the growing popularity among healthcare providers, are boosting the adoption of combination therapies among the patient population and fueling the demand for cancer cachexia therapeutics in the global market.


Rising Prevalence of Cachexia to Fuel Demand for Treatment

Globally, the increasing prevalence of cancer, coupled with an increase in the incidence of cachexia is presenting a large pool of patients seeking effective treatment for the condition. 

  • For instance, according to the estimations of the World Health Organization (WHO), in 2018, approximately 18.1 million new cancer cases were reported worldwide.

  • Also, according to the data published by the Society on Sarcopenia, Cachexia and Wasting Disorders (SCWD), in 2018, it was estimated that around 0.5-1.0% of the total population in the developed countries were suffering from cachexia including cancer-induced cachexia.

Thus, the increasing prevalence of cachexia among cancer patients globally is surging the demand for its effective therapeutic treatment and subsequently driving the cancer cachexia market growth.

Presence of Potential Drugs in Pipeline is projected to Propel Growth

The current treatment options of cachexia among the cancer patients are limited to drugs namely, progestogens, corticosteroids, and others. These drugs have proved their efficiency in the treatment of cancer induced cachexia, although there is a clinical gap in the treatment outcomes. At present, there is no drug candidate being specifically approved for the treatment of this condition. This augments the gap in treatment options, which the market players are aiming to fulfill through R&D and the introduction of new drugs in the global market.

  • For instance, PF-06946860, which is being sponsored by Pfizer Inc., is currently in the Phase 1 of clinical trials. The purpose of this trial is to study the efficacy of PF-06946860 in the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients with cachexia.

The success of the clinical trials of new candidates, regulatory approvals, and introductions of these drugs are anticipated to further boost the demand and adoption among the healthcare providers of cancer cachexia therapeutics.


High Cost Associated with Treatment and Stringent Government Policies to Restrict Growth

Despite the rising prevalence of cancer cachexia globally, certain factors are limiting the growth of the overall market. Among them is the high cost associated with cancer and its supportive treatment, as well as limited reimbursement for the therapeutics in the emerging countries. It is estimated that the cost associated with the treatment of cancer patients suffering from cachexia is comparatively higher than the non-cachexia cancer patients. Also, stringent government regulations regarding the clinical trial of new candidates has been one of the major barriers to the development and approval of effective treatment for this disorder. Thus, the higher out-of-pocket expenditure associated with cancer-induced cachexia and the lack of approved products for treatment are expected to contribute to the slow growth of this market during the forecast period.


By Product Analysis

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Combination Therapies Segment to Grow Rapidly Backed by Popularity of Multimodal Treatment

In terms of product, the market is segmented into progestogens, corticosteroids, combination therapies, and others. The progestogens segment held a dominant share of the market in 2019. The dominance is due to a comparatively lower cost of progestogens, along with high efficiency in the treatment of cancer cachexia. The combination therapies segment is projected to register a higher CAGR by 2027 owing to the increasing popularity of multimodal treatment among the patients living with the disease.

Similarly, the corticosteroids and other market segments are expected to exhibit comparatively moderate CAGRs during the forecast period.

By Distributional Channel Analysis

Hospital Pharmacy Segment Held Dominant Share in 2019 Owing to Higher Cases of Hospitalization

Among distribution channel, the market is segmented into hospital pharmacy, retail pharmacy, and online pharmacy. The hospital pharmacy segment is expected to generate a dominant Cancer Cachexia Market share during the forecast period. The dominance is due to an increase in the hospitalization of patients suffering from cancer and other related disorders such as cachexia.

Besides, the retail pharmacy and online pharmacy segments are expected to register significant growth by the end of the forecast period owing to the rising shift of patients towards homecare treatment.


North America Cancer Cachexia Market Size, 2016-2027 (USD Billion)

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The market size in North America stood at USD 0.80 billion in 2019. The dominance of this region is attributable to the higher prevalence of cancer cachexia and increasing awareness regarding cancer supportive care. Also, greater affordability among the patients along with the presence of adequate reimbursement policies in the U.S. and Canada are responsible for the dominance of this region. The market in Europe is expected to grow by showcasing a significant CAGR owing to the rising awareness regarding cancer-induced cachexia, combined with the increasing demand for therapeutics for treatment.

  • According to Globocan, an estimated 4.2 million new cancer cases were registered in Europe in 2018. Out of these, there were around 470,039 cases of lung cancer and 499,667 cases of colorectal cancer in the region.

There is a comparatively higher prevalence of cachexia among lung, colorectal, and head & neck cancer patients. The rising incidence is leading to a higher number of patients requiring treatment, further causing a surge in the demand for cancer cachexia therapeutics in the region. The market in Asia Pacific is expected to exhibit higher CAGR owing to the increasing patient population suffering from this disease. In addition to this, the market players in this region are making heavy investments to strengthen their supply chain and introduce new drugs. Latin America & the Middle East & Africa accounted for a comparatively lower share of the market owing to the lack of awareness among the general population regarding supportive care and the presence of inadequate reimbursement policies to cover the cost of the treatment.


Market Players are Increasing Investment in R&D to Introduce New Drugs

The current market is underpenetrated owing to a few players operating in this market and the lack of approved therapeutics, specifically for the treatment of cancer cachexia. This presents a huge growth opportunity for the other players to occupy dominant share of the market by introducing new products. For instance, OHR/AVR118 which is being studied by Ohr Pharmaceutical Inc. is currently in Phase 2 clinical trials for open label study in advanced cancer patients with cachexia.

Key players operating in this market are Bristol-Myers Squibb, ANI Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Merck & Co., Inc., Hikma Pharmaceuticals PLC, Mylan N.V., AbbVie, Inc., Pfizer Inc., and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.


  • Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, New York, U.S.

  • ANI Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Baudette, U.S.

  • Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, U.S.

  • Hikma Pharmaceuticals PLC, London, U.K.

  • Mylan N.V., Pennsylvania, U.S.

  • AbbVie, Inc., North Chicago, U.S.

  • Pfizer Inc., New York, U.S.

  • Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., Petach-Tikva, Israel

  • Other Players


  • April 2021 - Helsinn, a Swiss pharmaceutical, and its partner Ono Pharmaceutical announced the launch of Adlumiz Tablets to treat cancer cachexia in malignant non-small cell lung cancer, gastric cancer, pancreatic cancer, and colorectal cancer in Japan.

  • April 2021 - Actimed Therapeutics Ltd announced a license agreement for S-oxprenolol to Faraday Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Under this agreement, the company is eligible to receive royalties on any future sales of S-oxprenolol and Faraday acquired the global rights to develop and commercialize S-oxprenolol for cancer cachexia.

  • February 2021 - Trinity researchers announced that the company would partner with Artelo Biosciences to expand the research and investigate a new treatment for cancer cachexia.

  • January 2021 - Ono Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd and Helsinn Group announced that Adlumiz Tablet had been approved to treat cancer cachexia in Japan. ONO received the manufacturing and marketing approval to treat cancer cachexia and has exclusive rights to develop and commercialize Adlumiz in Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan.


An Infographic Representation of Cancer Cachexia Market

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The cancer cachexia market research report provides a detailed market overview and focuses on key aspects such as leading companies, product types, and leading applications of the product. Besides this, the report offers insights into the market trends, competitive landscape, and highlights key industry developments. In addition to the aforementioned factors, the report encompasses several factors that have contributed to the growth of the market over the recent years by using different research methodologies.

Report Scope & Segmentation



Study Period


Base Year


Forecast Period


Historical Period



  Value (USD billion)


By Product

  • Progestogens

  • Corticosteroids

  • Combination Therapies

  • Others  

By Distributional Channel

  • Hospital Pharmacy

  • Retail Pharmacy

  • Online Pharmacy

By Geography

  • North America (U.S. and Canada)

  • Europe (U.K., Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Scandinavia, and Rest of Europe)

  • Asia-Pacific (Japan, China, India, Australia, Southeast Asia, and Rest of Asia- Pacific)

  • Rest of World


Frequently Asked Questions

Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 2.02 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 2.93 billion by 2027.

In 2019, the value of the market in North America stood at USD 0.80 billion.

Growing at a CAGR of 4.8%, the market will exhibit steady growth in the forecast period (2020-2027).

The progestogens segment is expected to be the leading segment in this market during the forecast period.

Increasing prevalence of the disease and the presence of potential pipeline candidates are the major factors driving the growth of the market.

Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, Mylan N.V., and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., are the major players in the global market.

North America dominated the market in terms of share in 2019.

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