Shares of ICU Medical ( ICUI) were among the best-performing health-related stocks Wednesday, rising 18% after the medical device maker posted third-quarter earnings that blew past Wall Street expectations. The company earned $5.8 million, or 38 cents a share, on sales of $46.5 million. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call expected earnings of 19 cents a share. A year ago, the company reported a loss of $1 million, or 8 cents a share, on sales of $16.5 million. ICU said it increased sales in all of its product lines and distribution channels during the most recent period. Shares recently traded up $4.92 to $32.62. IMS Health ( RX) fell 1% after the company posted mixed third-quarter results. The company, which is in the process of being acquired by Dutch company VNU, earned $71.1 million, or 30 cents a share, on sales of $432.8 million. Excluding items, the company would have earned $80.6 million, or 34 cents a share. Analysts anticipated earnings of 33 cents a share, before items, and sales of $435.3 million. A year ago, IMS posted adjusted earnings of $70.7 million, or 30 cents a share, on sales of $384.2 million. Shares were down 30 cents to $24.22. Shares of Medicines Co. ( MDCO) rose 4% after the drug developer posted a narrower-than-expected third-quarter loss. The company reported a loss of $6.2 million, or 13 cents a share, on sales of $31.9 million. Analysts projected a loss of 19 cents a share and sales of $29.8 million. A year ago, the company reported a profit of $5.3 million, or 11 cents a share, on sales of $37.7 million. In early October, Medicines' shares were hammered after the company lowered its 2005 earnings and sales forecast and warned that third-quarter results would be worse than expectations at the time. The company predicted that it would post a loss of $10 million on sales of $30 million. At the time, analysts had been expecting the company to report a loss of 8 cents a share on sales of $45.2 million. Shares recently rose 65 cents to $16.74.