The U.S. contrast media market size was valued at USD 2.43 billion in 2022 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.1% from 2023 to 2030. The increasing burden of chronic diseases is creating a demand for diagnostic imaging procedures, which, in turn, is driving the market. Imaging tests, such as MRI, have become an integral part of the diagnosis for most diseases, and large-scale penetration of imaging technology in healthcare has increased the demand for contrast media in the U.S. market. The rising demand for imaging procedures has resulted in extensive R&D activities by contrast media manufacturers to launch novel products in the market and to get approved for new indications. For instance, in July 2022, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration gave Bayer authorization to U.S. providers to import ultravist (iopromide) with foreign labels, to lessen the effects of the ongoing iodinated contrast media scarcity.
In 2021, Bracco got the U.S. FDA approval for the 20-vial pack configuration of Lumason, an ultrasound contrast media agent. This, in turn, is expected to drive the market over the forecast period. Higher demand for diagnostic imaging operations has stemmed from increased public awareness of the value of early illness identification and preventative healthcare. Chronic conditions such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and neurological disorders require frequent medical imaging for diagnosis and monitoring. Contrast media are critical in detecting anomalies and allowing for early intervention. The growing incidence of these diseases has contributed to the demand for contrast media in the U.S.
The growing prevalence of complex comorbidities and long-term diseases has increased diagnostic imaging tests, including ultrasound, X-rays, and advanced imaging technology, such as MRI & CT scans. For instance, in November 2019, GE Healthcare received U.S. FDA approval for Clariscan, a contrast agent used for macrocyclic MRI. These products help identify the need for perioperative scans before surgeries and treatment in interventional procedures. According to the National Health Council, in 2020, nearly 157 million people in the U.S. were affected by chronic diseases, out of which around 81 million had multiple conditions, indicative of a high incidence of chronic conditions. This, in turn, is anticipated to drive the market over the forecast period.
Technological advancements in contrast media agents such as gadolinium-based contrast agents (GBCAs), microbubble contrast agents, dual-energy contrast-enhanced imaging, and nanoparticle-based contrast agents are projected to have a significant impact on the market. Diagnostic imaging modalities are increasingly employed because of advancements in the underlying technology, ranging from equipment to administration technology. Innovative products, such as syringeless injectors, reduce wastage and help achieve greater accuracy in delivering the right dose of contrast agents. These injectors reduce the examination time, which leads to increased patient throughput. Furthermore, introducing digital solutions that aid in managing contrast agent injection is anticipated to drive market growth.
The development of strategies, such as research activities related to Gadolinium-based Contrast Agents (GBCAs), for chelation & stabilization of Gd3+ ions to improve their contrast enhancement, selective imaging of a pathological site, and safety profile is further anticipated to drive market growth. For instance, the engineering of GBCAs into different nanoparticulate systems, such as mesoporous silica nanoparticles, liposomes, plasmonic nanoparticles, and nanocarriers, is anticipated to improve their biocompatibility, stability, safety profile, and pharmacokinetics. Thereby boosting the market growth over the forecast period.
The COVID-19 pandemic has put a significant strain on healthcare systems. Some potential effects of the pandemic in the U.S. contrast media market included a decline in non-essential imaging procedures: Many non-essential medical operations, like elective surgeries and regular imaging examinations, were postponed or cancelled during the peak of the epidemic to prioritize COVID-19 patients and decrease the risk of virus transmission. This drop in non-essential imaging operations is likely to have resulted in a temporary drop in demand for contrast media.
Manufacturers are continuously investing in research and development to introduce new and improved contrast agents, aiming to provide better diagnostic accuracy, reduced side effects, and improved patient safety, which can drive market growth. For instance, in April 2023, GE HEALTHCARE launched a new product Pixxoscan (gadobutrol). It aids in the visualization of aberrant structures and the distinction between pathological and healthy tissue. Also, it is approved for use in adults and children (including newborns) for contrast augmentation in cranial and spinal MRI and magnetic resonance angiography.
Based on modality, the market has been further segmented into ultrasound, Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), and X-ray/Computed Tomography (CT). The X-ray/CT segment dominated the market and held the largest market share of around 65% in 2022. Wide acceptance and cost-efficiency of X-ray/CT modality increases the adoption of contrast agents utilized for this modality type. X-ray/CT-based contrast agents comprise iodinated agents and barium-based contrast agents that are used in diagnostic procedures for numerous diseases and are less expensive. In addition, X-ray/CT contrast agents help produce high-resolution 3D images of structures, thereby, contributing to segment growth.
The ultrasound imaging segment is expected to grow at the fastest CAGR of 5.3% during the forecast period.Nowadays, gadolinium contrast agents are used in nearly one out of three MRI scans, which indicates the popularity of these agents in MRI procedures. MRI contrast agents are most often the best option for imaging soft tissues for the detection of cancer. In addition, they are used to visualize lesions during MRI scans for the detection of neurological disorders, aortoiliac occlusive diseases, and liver diseases.
Based on type, iodinated contrast media dominated the market and held the largest market share of over 60% in 2022. This can be attributed to the high penetration of X-ray and CT procedures as well as the availability of non-ionic stable iodinated agents for improved diagnosis. Iodine-based contrast media are used to enhance CT and X-ray images. They are used to enhance visualization of the GI tract, internal organs, arteries & veins, soft tissues, and the brain. Generally, all radiological examinations performed using injected contrast media involve iodinated contrast media. Iodine-based contrast media have excellent radio-opacity and lower toxicity than other agents. Iodinated contrasted media are widely applicable in a broad number of indications including neurological, nephrological, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, and musculoskeletal disorders as well as cancer. Thereby, contributing to the segment growth.
Microbubble Contrast agent is expected to grow at the fastest CAGR of 5.3% over the forecast period. It is primarily used in contrast-enhanced ultrasonography (CEUS) imaging. CEUS involves injecting microbubbles into a vein, usually in the arm. These microbubbles operate as ultrasonic wave reflectors, amplifying the signals obtained by the ultrasound equipment. This increases the visualization of blood flow and the distinction between different tissues and organs.
The gadolinium-based contrast media is expected to be the second fastest growing segment. Its role in increasing image clarity, and enhancing the visibility of blood vessels, inflammation, and tumors improves overall diagnostic accuracy without the risk of exposure to ionizing radiation. Generally, they are used to enhance imaging of internal organs, the GI tract, the brain, arteries & veins, and soft tissues.
Based on the application, the neurological disorder segment dominated the market and held the largest market share of around 30% in 2022.The use of MRI contrast agents is increasing because they provide better pictures of brain structures during the diagnostic assessment of the CNS for neurological diseases than CT. GBCAs are utilized for the visualization of demyelinated, inflammatory, and neoplastic lesions. Gadavist, Dotarem, and Prohance are the most widely used macrocyclic GBCAs for the diagnosis of neurological disorders in the U.S. In addition, X-ray/CT contrast agents find wide applications in diagnosing neurological conditions, which further contributes to segment growth.
The cardiovascular disorder segment is expected to grow at the fastest CAGR of 5.4% during the forecast period 2023 to 2030.Contrast-enhanced ultrasound imaging of the cardiovascular system or echocardiography is the most widely used modality for imaging of the cardiovascular system in adult and pediatric patients. Optison, Definity, and Lumason are the most widely used ultrasound contrast agents in the U.S.
They are indicated in patients with suboptimal echocardiograms for opacifying the left ventricle and improving delineation of the left ventricular endocardial border. Moreover, the removal of contraindications for ultrasound contrast agents and extended use of Visipaque are cumulatively expected to boost MRI and CT contrast Modality sales, particularly in the U.S.
Key players are adopting strategies, such as mergers & acquisitions and indication extension, to enhance their market position. Acquisitions aid companies in increasing their presence with wider geographical reach and stronger portfolios. Disease indication extension is popular in this market as it enables companies to gain the confidence of select population subsets. With approvals for specific indications, companies target niche patient cohorts and boost the adoption of their products. For instance, in July 2022, Fresenius SE & Co. KGaA announced the plan to launch a wide range of generic contrast media for CT with the launch of Iodixanol Injection. The Iodixanol Injection is the first generic iso-osmolar, dimeric iodinated contrast media agent to receive US FDA approval.
Revenue forecast in 2030
USD 3.36 billion
CAGR of 4.1% from 2023 to 2030
Base year for estimation
2018 - 2021
2023 - 2030
Revenue in USD million/billion and CAGR from 2023 to 2030
Revenue forecast, company ranking, competitive landscape, growth factors, and trends
Type, modality, application
Key companies profiled
Bayer AG; GE Healthcare; Guerbet; Bracco Diagnostic, Inc; Nano Therapeutics Pvt. Ltd.; CMC Contrast AB; Lantheus Medical Imaging, Inc.; IMAX Diagnostic Imaging; Trivitron Healthcare
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This report forecasts revenue growth at the country level and analyses the latest industry trends in each sub-segment from 2018 to 2030. For this study, Grand View Research has segmented the U.S. contrast media report based on type, modality, and application:
Type Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2018 - 2030)
Microbubble Contrast Media
Gadolinium-based Contrast Media
Iodinated Contrast Media
Barium-based Contrast Media
Modality Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2018 - 2030)
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
X-ray/Computed Tomography (CT scan)
Application Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2018 - 2030)
b. The increasing incidence of chronic conditions such as cardiovascular, neurovascular, and cancer is creating demand for diagnostic imaging procedures which is likely to boost the demand for contrast media in the U.S. In addition, research activities related to gadolinium-based contrast agents (GBCAs) to improve their contrast enhancement, are further anticipated to drive market growth.
b. The U.S. contrast media market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 4.11% from 2023 to 2030 to reach USD 3.36 billion by 2030.
b. The iodinated contrast media segment dominated the U.S. contrast media market with a share of 63.17% in 2022, which can be attributed to the high penetration of X-ray and CT procedures as well as the availability of nonionic stable iodinated agents for improved diagnosis.
b. Some key players operating in the U.S. contrast media market include Bayer AG, GE Healthcare, Guerbet, Bracco Diagnostic, Inc., Nano Therapeutics Pvt. Ltd., CMC Contrast AB, Lantheus Medical Imaging, Inc., IMAX Diagnostic Imaging and Trivitron Healthcare.
b. The U.S. contrast media market size was estimated at USD 2.43 billion in 2022 and is expected to reach USD 2.53 billion in 2023.
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