Of PMAs, Medtronic and, well, Medtronic

During the course of my review of recent premarket approvals (PMAs),  I was once again startled (although I certainly shouldn’t be, having not too long ago done this same exercise on patent approvals) by the dominance of Medtronic.  As an exercise (because exercise is important), I decided to just graph the January 2009 premarket approvals by company. 



Source:  FDA


Admittedly, the only original PMA in this list was Advanced Medical Optics, with all the rest being supplementals.  However, simply looking at the distribution of supplementals illustrates how thoroughly Medtronic dominates the device arena.  (Even if you combine the Guidants and the Boston Scientifics, the total is only 10, a pale comparison to Medtronic’s 58.) And, with the addition of valve companies, CoreValve and Ventor, to the Medtronic stockpile, one might wonder if one day the "medtech industry" will simply be renamed the "Medtonic industry".


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