Report: Hand-carried ultrasound revenues continue to grow
Global revenues for hand-carried ultrasound (HCU) systems grew by 42 percent in 2007 to $565 million, according to the second annual HCU report issued by Klein Biomedical Consultants (KBC).

The recently published The U.S. Market for Hand Carried/Handheld Ultrasound Systems: Challenges & Opportunities – 2007 Report shows GE Healthcare became a leader in worldwide HCU revenues, growing 50 percent to $250 million for the year. Along with GE, KBC said it continues to project the market leaders in 2010 will be SonoSite and Zonare Medical Systems, which grew 22 and 60 percent, respectively, during 2007.

“It continued to be a robust year for HCU system sales which is still by far the fastest growing market segment in ultrasound,” said Harvey Klein, PhD, president of KBC. “The three leading HCU companies alone accounted for more than 85 percent of overall revenues. We especially saw strong international sales of 49 percent and solid U.S. growth of 33 percent led by these three vendors.”

KBC only considered HCU systems that weigh less than 11 pounds for the purpose of the report. Products from Bard, GE, Medison, Siemens, SonoSite, Terason and others are included in this category. Also included was the Zonare system, which is characterized as a convertible system, since it can be separated from the cart and used as a hand-carried device, according to the report.

The report excluded service and veterinary care revenues. KBC reported that the United States continued to be the largest single market at $239 million for the year where SonoSite maintained its lead position.

“The HCU market should remain dynamic over the next five years as clinicians face increasing demand for portable ultrasound exams,” Klein said. “We believe the growth rate for HCU will be approximately 20 percent in the U.S. and 15 percent internationally over this time period with an average of 17 percent worldwide. This should make the HCU market the driving segment for increasing global ultrasound revenues overall.”