Medical Plastics

BCC Research
June 1, 2010
279 Pages - SKU: WA2718710
The U.S. medical plastics market is expected to reach almost 3.5 billion pounds by the end of 2010 and will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of about 5%, consuming about 4.4 billion pounds by 2015.

Commodity thermoplastics dominate the market with a little more than 55% of total volume. This sector is estimated at nearly 2 billion pounds in 2010 and should increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.8% to reach 2.5 billion pounds in 2015.

TPEs, engineering resins, and thermosets will show the most significant growth rates over the next 5 years although they only constitute about 20% of total volume. Of these, TPEs will experience the highest compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.2%, from 68 million pounds in 2010 to 92 million pounds in 2015.

Additional Information


The objective of this study is to analyze current and future U.S. markets for medical plastics excluding medical packaging, although several medical devices are often included in studies of medical packaging, such as syringes, kits, tubing, and trays. Actually, these four categories are multifunctional and can be covered in both categories.


Plastics usage in the healthcare field encompasses several distinct markets—and, as noted, cover applications for medical devices and related products and packaging. Market research studies in the past have often combined these two applications, which do not benefit companies exclusively involved in medical devices or medical packaging.

This study will cover plastics usage in medical devices that have sustained annual growth rates in excess of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The obvious aging of the U.S. population, continuing cost-reduction pressures in the healthcare field, advances in polymer performance, introduction of new and often life-saving devices and the ever-present environmental/disposable/nondisposable medical device triad warrant an in-depth study as we move into another decade.


This report will be somewhat different from many other studies in which the focus was on the materials such as resins and elastomers. This report will initially treat the medical device industry, itself, and industry and market information will be updated and definitive and detailed estimates and forecasts of the U.S. market will be provided, followed by a detailed analysis of the key resins used to make these devices.

The ever-changing face of the medical device industry, new types of medical devices legislative/regulatory and environmental issues, new products and technologies related to medical devices, sterilization techniques and impact on polymer selection, polymer usage in medical devices, status of PVC, and medical plastic’s product lines and trade-named products are some of the topics that are covered.

It needs to be reiterated that several specific “medical devices” such as syringes, trays, tubing and kits are considered by many to be an integral part of the “medical packaging” market. For example, prefilled syringes are now the dominant types, as opposed to those filled at hospitals and/or physician’s offices. Kit and trays are also used to prepackage other medical devices, all of which will be explained in the report.


An extensive review was undertaken of trade and technical literature on plastics use in medical devices. Following the collection and analysis of this data, unresolved issues were discussed with polymer producers, compounders, medical device manufacturers and others. The word “millions” is often abbreviated as “MM,” and growth rates are annually compounded. All tables not sourced “BCC Research” were extracted from a variety of trade literature sources.


Research analyst Mel Schlechter has more than 40 years in the chemical industry, and specializes in plastics market research. He has been with BCC Research for more than a decade and holds a B.S. in chemistry, M.S. in organic chemistry, and a M.B.A. in marketing.

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