Medical devices major,
St. Jude Medical, Inc.
) recently launched its revolutionary MediGuide technology, a three
dimensional ("3D") navigation device used to assist
electro-physiologist evaluate cardiovascular anatomy. It is the
first-of-its-kind medical imaging technology in the global medical
Per the American Heart Association, humans are increasingly being
exposed to harmful ionizing radiation as billions of people are
undergoing radiation-based imaging tests regularly. The MediGuide
technology uses innovative recorded fluoroscopic image instead of
conventional live fluoroscopy to effectively reduce radiation
exposure time during medical imaging surgeries.
The technology applies 3D visualization to already recorded
fluoroscopic images in real-time and uses magnetic trackers to
locate the exact position of MediGuide enabled devices inside the
heart. Along with Siemens Healthcare's Artis zee angiography
systems, St. Jude's MediGuide technology enables enhanced
navigation during electrophysiology (EP) surgeries.
Based on its unique features, the MediGuide technology (earlier
belonged to the AF division) should further expand the product
portfolio of the Cardiovascular and Ablation Technologies Division
("CATD"). St. Jude recently merged its Atrial Fibrillation ("AF")
Division and Cardiovascular ("CV") Division to form the CATD.
According to the company, there is considerable growth opportunity
for the MediGuide product. Recent data shows that out of the
billions of radiation-based imaging studies performed by physicians
all over the world in a year, one-third of them are cardiovascular
For 2012, St. Jude expects sales between $870 million and $895
million from the AF business alone. Based on the uniqueness of this
new product, we expect that the company should be able to either
meet or surpass its expectations.
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The University of Kansas Hospital in Kansas is the first institute
in the U.S. to use this technology and its physicians very much
impressed with the device's ability to perform procedures with
significantly less radiation exposure.
With a market cap of $13.63 billion, St. Jude is a leading medical
device manufacturer with a solid rate of growth over the past
decade. We are impressed by its solid fundamentals, healthy growth
trajectory, strong product mix, robust pipeline and cost management
While a host of new growth drivers, including new products and cost
saving measures, are expected to boost results in 2013 and beyond,
we remain cautious about the increased competition, weakening Euro,
the soft CRM market and the overall tough macroeconomic conditions.
A still choppy CRM space overhangs on St. Jude and its peers
Boston Scientific Corporation
). We currently have a Neutral recommendation on St. Jude, which
carries a short-term Zacks #3 Rank (Hold rating).