The Catheter Business: How Much? Who? Where?

Published - Sep 2004| Analyst - Barbara Breindel| Code - HLC019B
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Report Highlights

  • Fueled by stent revenues, U.S. catheter market sales were forecast to exceed $13.1 billion in 2003. Rising at an AAGR (average annual growthrate) of 12.3%, the market is expected to exceed $23 billion in 2009.
  • Coronary catheter applications should pass $8.2 billion in 2009 with 64% of the projected revenue expected from the sale of drug-elutingstents.
  • Approximately 50% of U.S. catheter production is exported. Roughly 50% of exports go to Europe and 30% go to Japan.
  • Approximately 50% of U.S. catheter production is exported. Roughly 50% of exports go to Europe and 30% go to Japan.
  • U.S. companies received more than 63% of recently granted patents.


The history of catheters, i.e., tubes used to provide passage into a structure usually for the purpose of injecting or withdrawing a fluid, dates back to the 16th century. Today there are many applications for catheters, but the major uses are in the areas of urology (renal), cardiology and intravenous/infusion therapy. Through the years, design concepts often have had to wait until technology caught up to them.

In the meantime, the catheter industry remains driven by innovation, and recent scientific and technological advances have fueled the market. New product introductions, particularly in the cardiac stent marketplace, have dramatically expanded the industry.

This BCC study examines the catheter industry in depth, focusing on market size and participants, and its presence within the international marketplace. Since this country dominates the international marketplace, this report focuses on the U.S. and attempts to discuss what factors allow this dominance. In addition, all areas of the market are addressed including identification of significant products, end markets and government and regulatory agencies. Participating companies are discussed with regard to technological strengths and weaknesses, relative market share, marketing strengths, participation in new segments, and innovative marketing practices.


The report contains:

  • Analysis of underlying technological advances
  • Discussion of product development by market segment
  • Analysis of competition within each segment
  • Complete patent analysis
  • Discussion of strategic marketing actions
  • Overview of regulations and standards relating to the industry
  • Growth trends by segment with forecasts to 2009.


Data for this study were collected using both primary and secondary data research techniques. A literature search of BCC's extensive library, as well as scientific, medical and libraries was conducted. Extensive interviews with industry personnel, professional and trade organizations, government agency personnel, observers, scientists, and industry professionals were conducted.

Data collected were analyzed by BCC personnel to determine specific findings and forecasts. Once these forecasts were obtained they were validated with industry experts; consequently, all estimates provided in this report represent a consensus of BCC personnel, industry participants, and industry observers. Since some segments of this report are not routinely measured BCC derived estimates from a variety of analogous sources. Whenever market estimates are derived they are fully noted. All forecasts use constant 2004 dollars.


Information contained in this report includes data obtained from government agencies, corporate publications, and findings from industry trade associations. Other information sources were: interviews with industry personnel, corporations, government, and professional agencies and trade associations. Further information was obtained through our extensive literature search.


Research analyst Barbara Breindel has advised the medical equipment and pharmaceuticals industries with product evaluations, domestic and foreign market analyses, and consumer trend forecasts. Her studies have examined drug delivery systems, drug packaging, pharmaceuticals, microorganism testing, skin, wound and hair treatment markets, as well as the medical diagnostic equipment and laser industries. Ms. Breindel has been with BCC for over 15 years. B.S., Lehman College, N.Y.; M.B.A., Marketing, Baruch Graduate School, CCNY.

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