Contrast Media/Contrast Agents Market Report

Contrast Media/Contrast Agents Market Analysis, By Agent Type (Iodinated, Barium-based, Gadolinium-based, Microbubble), By Modality (X-ray/CT, MRI, Ultrasound), By Application, And Segment Forecasts, 2018 - 2025

  • Published Date: Apr, 2018
  • Base Year for Estimate: 2016
  • Report ID: GVR-2-68038-357-7
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Data: 2017 - 2025
  • Number of Pages: 120

Industry Outlook

The global contrast media/contrast agents market size was valued at USD 4.25 billion in 2016. It is anticipated to post a CAGR of 3.8% during the forecast period. The market is oligopolistic in nature, with key players such as Bayer, GE Healthcare, Guerbet, Lantheus Medical Imaging, and Bracco Diagnostics holding more than 60% share in the market. Entry of new manufacturers such as Ascelia Pharma is expected in the second half of the forecast period as the firm is developing manganese-based products, which is a safer alternative to gadolinium-based agents.

U.S. Contrast media/contrast agents market

Apart from competitive strategies, the underlying factor supporting the growth of the market is diagnostic procedure volumes, stemming from the growing burden of chronic diseases. According to WHO, it has been estimated that by 2020, chronic diseases will account for three-quarters of all deaths worldwide and around 71-75% of those deaths will be related to heart diseases. Chronic diseases are mainly preventable and deaths related to it can be decreased in number if they are diagnosed at early stages. Hence, increasing prevalence of chronic diseases is one of the key trends stoking market growth.

Companies in this space are targeting for higher share through indication extension strategies in developed countries such as the U.S. This enables firms to gain confidence of select patient subsets. With approvals for specific indications, companies target niche patient cohorts and boost product adoption rates. For instance, in 2017, GE healthcare’s Visipaque received U.S. FDA approval for use in coronary computed tomography angiography (CTA) in adult and paediatric patients. This new indication grants CVD-afflicted patients with an alternative to non-invasive stress test and invasive coronary angiography for diagnosis of coronary artery disease.

Market players are relying on inorganic growth strategies to stay ahead in the arena. Guerbet, since it took over Mallinckrodt’s products, is better placed in the market. With Dotarem in its batch, Guerbet is now challenging Bayer’s top selling Gadavist/Gadovist sales. This is one of the strategies that the firms in this space widely use to increase their share.

Contrast Agent Type Insights

Based on type, the market is categorized into barium-based, iodinated, gadolinium-based, and microbubble contrast media. Iodinated contrast materials accounted for the leading share in 2016. The dominance of the segment can be attributed to high penetration of contrast materials in x-ray and CT procedures as well as availability of non-ionic stable iodinated agents for improved diagnosis. The gadolinium-based materials used for MRI procedures held significant revenue share in 2016. However, this class of contrast materials is currently under regulatory scrutiny, which is expected to prove detrimental for the MRI space until the arrival of safer alternative agents, such as manganese-based compounds.

Modality Insights

Based on modality, the market is segmented into x-ray/CT, MRI, and ultrasound. The x-ray/CT modality was the leading revenue contributor in 2016 owing to its wide applicability in varied diseases. X-ray/CT based agents mostly comprise of iodinated and barium-based contrast materials, which are used in diagnostic procedures for numerous diseases and are far less expensive.

On the other hand, some of the MRI agents have been withdrawn from Europe. Despite the hurdles, the MRI segment is estimated to post the highest CAGR during the forecast period, owing to advent of manganese-based agents. The ultrasound contrast media segment is anticipated to witness lower penetration in comparison to others, thus resulting in smaller share of the overall revenue.

Application Insights

Based on applications, the contrast media agents market is segmented into cardiovascular, neurological, gastrointestinal, cancer, nephrological, musculoskeletal disorders, and other diseases. In 2016, neurological disorders was the leading revenue contributor, followed by cardiovascular disorders and cancer. High applicability of modalities and accessibility to recently launched products for diagnosis of neurological, cardiovascular, and cancer segments support overall revenue growth. 

Gastrointestinal applications are poised to experience the fastest growth over the forecast period. On the other hand, applications such as nephrological disorders, cardiovascular disorders, and cancer are likely to witness moderate growth over the coming years.

Regional Insights

North America led with a share of about 46.0% in 2016. Strategic initiatives undertaken by key manufacturers targeting select patient subsets in this space is anticipated to accelerate growth of the regional market. Presence of well-established healthcare facilities and availability of advanced technologies, combined with continual demand for diagnostic procedures, are some of the factors that will help the region maintain its position throughout the forecast period.

Global contrast media agents market

Europe followed as the second largest in terms of revenue in 2016, supported largely by growing usage of diagnostic imaging modalities, including MRI, CT, and ultrasound.

Contrast Media Agents Market Share Insights

Some of the key players in the market are Bayer AG, GE Healthcare, Guerbet, Lantheus Medical Imaging, and Bracco Diagnostics. In an effort to increase market presence, Guerbet acquired Mallinckrodt’s contrast media and delivery systems, resulting in an expanded portfolio of improved products. The acquisition was well planned as Guerbet’s business holds strong position in Europe and similarly, Mallinckrodt is well placed in the U.S. With this acquisition, Guerbet successfully expanded its geographic reach. Similarly, others reigning in the market are focusing on varying strategies to maintain their dominance. 

Report Scope



Base year for estimation


Forecast period

2017 - 2025

Market representation                        

Revenue in USD Billion and CAGR from 2017 to 2025

Regional scope

North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Rest of the World

Country scope

U.S., Canada, U.K., France, Japan, India

Report coverage

Revenue forecast, company share, competitive landscape, growth factors, and trends

15% free customization scope (equivalent to 5 analysts working days)

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Segments Covered in the Report

This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels and provides an analysis on the industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2016 to 2025. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the contrast media/contrast agentsmarket report based on contrast agent type, diagnostic modality, application, and region:

  • Contrast Agent Type Outlook (Revenue, USD Billion, 2016 - 2025)

    • Iodinated contrast media

    • Barium-based contrast media

    • Gadolinium-based contrast media

    • Microbubble contrast media

  • Modality Outlook (Revenue, USD Billion, 2016 - 2025)

    • X-ray/CT contrast agents

    • MRI contrast agents

    • Ultrasound contrast agents

  • Modality Outlook (Revenue, USD Billion, 2016 - 2025)

    • Cardiovascular disorders

    • Neurological disorders

    • Gastrointestinal disorders

    • Cancer

    • Nephrological disorders

    • Musculoskeletal disorders

    • Others

  • Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Billion, 2016 - 2025)

    • North America

      • U.S.

      • Canada

    • Europe

      • U.K.

      • France

    • Asia

      • Japan

      • India

    • Row

Key questions answered by the report
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