Back in November 2006, we polled visitors to our homepage, asking which of the listed vendors would be the first to acquire a smaller company in the imaging industry. The overwhelming majority (44.3%) chose GE Healthcare, Waukesha, Wis—see the pie chart below for the complete results—but respondents’ gut feelings weren’t exactly right. Within the first couple of weeks of 2007, several acquisitions were announced:

  • Varian Medical Systems, Palo Alto, Calif, acquiring Germany’s ACCEL Instruments;
  • AngioDynamics, Queensbury, NY, acquiring RITA Medical Systems, Fremont, Calif; and
  • FUJIFILM Medical Systems USA, Stamford, Conn, acquiring Prosolv CardioVascular—an article about the acquisition was published in the April 2007 issue of Medical Imaging.

The major announcement, however, that I think sent shock waves through the industry was Eastman Kodak Co, Rochester, NY, selling its Health Group to Onex Healthcare Holdings Inc, Toronto. Sure, the company announced its intention to sell the health division back in 2006, but I don’t think anyone expected it so soon.

Kodak is a name that’s been in imaging for as long as I can remember, and in the medical and dental subspecialties for many years. In fact, the company sponsored a NASCAR vehicle for a long time—on August 15, 2004, the number 77 Kodak Racing Dodge featured two pink ribbons framing the theme “Kodak Mammography Film” in the hopes of driving breast cancer awareness. As a NASCAR fan, it was great to see my two passions combined at Watkins Glen: racing and radiology.

Alas, by the May 1 deadline, the deal was sealed, and a “new” company has emerged: Carestream Health Inc. Operating as an independent company with more than 8,100 employees, Caresteam will continue to use the Kodak brand with its products and is located on the Web at

Also emerging on the imaging scene are two new radiology-themed search engines. These, of course, are in addition to and First, searches for information in journals, cases and teaching files, images, news, videos, books, societies, vendors, products, and CME opportunities—all relating to radiology. (Thanks to Roland Talanow, MD, PhD, of the Cleveland Clinic who told me about this tool.) Two other new and relevant search engines are, which searches biomedical articles, and The latter has been enhanced by its maker, Elsevier, St Louis, and provides access to information and educational content in the hopes of enabling better diagnosis and treatment.

What are your thoughts on all of these new pieces to the radiology puzzle? First, what is your gut reaction to Kodak becoming Carestream? And second, what’s your take on all of these radiology-related search engines—and which one(s) are you using? Zip me an e-mail with your thoughts; I always love hearing from you.

Andi Lucas, editor