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Industry        Surgeon

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Arthroscopy/Soft Tissue Companies Address Knee, Shoulder Repair

Posted in Research to Reality | Apr 2016 | Comments (0)

Tags: medical device developmentorthopaedic surgical devicescartilage regenerationtissue repairrotator cuff surgerytendon repairorthopaedic industry trendsarthroscopic surgeryshoulder injurykneeorthobiologicsarthroscopy/soft tissueminimally invasiveshoulder

Dr. Brian_Cole_100x132     Lester Fehr_100x132     Adam Klyce_Active_Implants_100x132     John McCutcheon_Ceterix_100x132     Scott Schaffner_Smith__Nephew_100x131  

Brian Cole, M.D.

Lester Fehr

Adam Klyce

John McCutcheon

Scott Schaffner

Surgeons continue to request devices that use muscle- and tissue-sparing techniques that return patients to activity faster and with less pain. These requests are largely driven by patients in the segment, such as athletes and “weekend warriors,” who are making more decisions about their care. These requests, in turn, continue to grow the arthroscopy and soft tissue market.

ORTHOPRENEUR spoke with four device companies, ranging from early-stage to large player, that are responding to this trend in a number of ways. Some are launching and refining diverse product portfolios to cover a range of procedures, while others focus on meeting specific clinical needs. Surgeons and companies say that some biologics and stem cells are gaining greater traction as potential treatment options, as well.

Simplification continues to be an interest expressed by surgeons, says Scott Schaffner, Vice President of Sports Medicine at Smith & Nephew, the second-largest player in the segment behind Arthrex.

“If there are ways to spare anatomy, we obviously want to do that in the least disruptive way possible,” he says. “The ultimate goal is to continue to improve outcomes. There are a lot of wonderful procedures within sports medicine today, but everyone acknowledges room for improvement.”

Despite advancements, some procedures still pose challenges for surgeons, such as cases associated with diseases and complex injuries like rotator cuff and meniscus repairs.

Two companies that ORTHOPRENEUR spoke to noted treatment of the meniscus, in particular.

In 2015, Ceterix Orthopaedics launched the NovoStitch® Plus Meniscal Repair System, which enables placement of a circumferential compression stitch around the meniscus. The system incorporates a pre-loaded suture implant, intended to ease use and cut the number of procedure steps by more than half.

John McCutcheon, President and CEO of Ceterix, emphasizes the importance of repairing the meniscus rather than performing a meniscectomy, which he notes is under scrutiny as a treatment for meniscus repair.

McCutcheon is seeing surgeons push to do repairs for more types of injuries that they used to think were irreparable, like radial tears.

“More and more surgeons say, ‘Look, we’ve got to repair everything,’ ” McCutcheon says. “The data supports what we’re doing. More data is coming out that a meniscectomy is not a good thing—payors and providers are paying attention. All of the literature and data on repairs shows that [repairing the meniscus] prevents arthritis later and that it’s the right thing to do, so that’s been good for us.”

Active Implants is also focused on developing alternative treatments for the meniscus. The company’s NUsurface® meniscus implant, the first “artificial meniscus” designed to replace one that is damaged or deteriorating, is currently in its investigational stage in two clinical trials, SUN and VENUS, in the U.S.

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