I will grudgingly admit that I'm a bit greedy when it comes to health-care giant Johnson &Johnson (NYSE:JNJ). Sure, the cash flow is great, but would it be too much to ask for a little more revenue and earnings growth as well? After all, improving internal profitability and cash efficiency can only get you so far; sooner or later, revenue growth tells the tale.

Speaking of which, J&J saw revenue fall a bit more than 1% in the quarter. That was actually the blended result of a slight improvement in operational performance and a nearly 2% negative currency impact. Just for the sake of convenience, all revenue numbers that I discuss today will be the "after currency" reported numbers.

In the major business lines, consumer revenue was up 2%, and devices were up nearly 4%, but pharma was down 6% -- a result more or less par for the course lately. Remicade was the only major pharmaceutical to post double-digit growth (up 16% to $692 million), and other high-profile businesses like Cordis (cardiology), DePuy (orthopedics), and Lifescan (diabetes) were up 10%, 3%, and 3% respectively.

I realize it's tough to accelerate a giant ship like J&J, but I still believe that's what needs to happen. The company has some decent drugs in the pipeline -- including compounds for psoriasis, pain, infections, and cancer, as well as the Risperdal follow-up Paliperidone -- but this area could use some more polishing.

The same goes for medical devices. While I believe Boston Scientific's (NYSE:BSX) latest offer for Guidant (NYSE:GDT) has pushed the price beyond a reasonable level, I do believe that J&J should look at the likes of St. Jude (NYSE:STJ) and perhaps some smaller medical-tech companies with promising products that address large markets.

Here in the pre-market hours, it looks like the stock is going to trade down today. And I'm OK with that. I frankly don't own quite as much J&J as I'd like to, and I'm more than happy to buy shares from those who want to sell in the wake of this report (after the ten-day blackout period that our trading rules require, of course). J&J isn't a perfect story, but I still believe that investors who buy today and hold for a while will be happy they did.

For more medical technology missives:

From innovative new medicines to the cutting edge of nanotech, Motley Fool Rule Breakers scans the world of high technology in search of the next ultimate growth stock. To join the hunt, sign up today for a 30-day free trial.

Fool contributor Stephen Simpson owns shares of Johnson & Johnson, but has no financial interest in any other stocks mentioned (that means he's neither long nor short the shares). The Fool has a disclosure policy.