Study: Rapid growth for North American contrast media market
The North American contrast media market is experiencing rapid growth in several segments, spurred by the aging population and increased incidence of diseases, especially cardiovascular. This is driving demand for contrast media, which enhances images of anatomical regions including the cardiovascular and gastrointestinal systems. The improved ability to clearly delineate previously tough-to-recognize anatomical regions creates several market opportunities.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, The North American Contrast Media Market, finds that the markets earned revenues of $1.37 billion in 2006 and estimates this to reach $2.16 billion in 2013.

"Contrast media vendors are capitalizing on innovative medical imaging technologies requiring the use of contrast media to improve the diagnosis of diseases and simultaneously reinvigorate their bottom lines," notes Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst A.J. Ajibade.

Improvements to medical imaging technologies are increasing the application base for contrast media. Additionally, magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) and computed tomography angiography (CTA), are improving cardiovascular disease diagnosis, and used increasingly with contrast media. As a result, contrast media are gaining vast acceptance and thus encouraging sales in the market.

However, group purchasing organization (GPO) contracts are reducing total market revenues, while improving sales for only a few market participants. These GPO contracts are often characterized as dense with stipulations that may serve to benefit the interests of the GPOs and affiliated healthcare organizations.

Since this market is becoming increasingly dependent on contracts to secure sales, vendors that are not included in these healthcare contracts, which are exclusive in some cases, are facing escalating financial woes.

"Vendors must become fully aware of the purchasing process and make calculated decisions to secure their companies' sales, while improving the outlook for the total market," says A.J. Ajibade. "With respect to product innovation, it is imperative that the contrast media products are compatible with new applications."

Contrast media manufacturers, vendors, distributors and end-users must involve themselves in substantive lobbying efforts to prevent potential products from being locked out of availability to healthcare providers. They should aggressively focus on efforts that provide healthcare organizations equal accessibility to all market products.