Abbott Labs' second-quarter earnings beat Wall Street's projections, as the company continues to perform well in its post-branded pharmaceuticals life. However, Abbott's medical device business couldn't keep up its more successful segments, even as the company has made progress in key areas such as drug-eluting stents, while advancing into emerging markets.Overall, device sales fell 1.6% year-over-year for the quarter.

Abbott's made a few recent acquisitions to beef up this business, and the company's stellar Xience stent remains atop the industry. Are Abbott's plans for the future enough to turn around this division's slumping sales, however? Below, Motley Fool contributor Dan Carroll tells you what you need to know about Abbott's device business, and how this segment will impact this well-diversified company -- and your portfolio -- in the future.

Fool contributor Dan Carroll has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Johnson & Johnson. The Motley Fool owns shares of Johnson & Johnson. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.