Smith & Nephew Announces the Launch of Its FasT-Fix(TM) Meniscal Repair System

'For the first time, I have a pure arthroscopic system that I'm confident will

truly repair a meniscal tear.'

- Dr. James Andrews, Alabama Sports Medicine Institute, Birmingham, AL



Apr 23, 2001, 01:00 ET from Smith & Nephew, Inc.

    ANDOVER, Mass., April 23 /PRNewswire Interactive News Release/ -- Smith &
 Nephew, Inc., Endoscopy Division, today announced the global launch of its
 FasT-Fix(TM) Meniscal Repair System.  The FasT-Fix system is the first
 meniscal repair technique that combines the ease of use provided by meniscal
 repair implants with the strength of traditional suture repairs.  Until now,
 orthopedic surgeons have had to choose between less invasive implant
 techniques and stronger suture techniques.  The FasT-Fix System is the first
 easy-to-use suture-based implant that has the strength of the gold standard
 suture repair without the compromises associated with current meniscal
 implants.
     Suture techniques require the creation of an incision in the back of the
 knee resulting in extended operative time.  Faster techniques that eliminate
 this incision result in compromised fixation strength.  Laboratory testing at
 the University of Kentucky demonstrated that the fixation strength of the
 FasT-Fix device was equivalent to that of a vertical mattress suture stitch,
 the current strongest repair.  Suture-based repairs have an established
 history of long-term results, and are technically challenging, as these
 repairs require a posterior incision.  Subsequent clinical testing confirmed
 that the FasT-Fix system eliminated the technical hurdles without sacrificing
 strength.
     Dr. Lawrence Lemak from the Alabama Sports Medicine Institute, Birmingham,
 Alabama, stated, "It is a safe, effective technique: an excellent solution for
 all-inside repair."  Dr. David Caborn, Associate Professor of Orthopedic
 Surgery, Medical Director of Sports Medicine, at the University of Kentucky,
 states, "The FasT-Fix meniscal repair technique combines the biomechanical
 strength of the vertical mattress suture with the superior resistance to
 construct elongation: truly a first."
     The FasT-Fix system has changed the way Dr. Nicholas Sgaglione, Chief,
 Division of Sports Medicine, North Shore University Hospital, Manhasset, NY,
 repairs the meniscus.  "It gives me the speed and ease of use of meniscal
 implants with the security of the classic non-absorbable suture repair."  Ron
 Sparks, President of Smith & Nephew Endoscopy adds, "The meniscal repair
 market has grown significantly over the past three years as arthroscopic
 surgeons have shifted from sutures to new implantable devices.  Until now, no
 device has offered the strength of sutures and the ease of use offered by the
 FasT-Fix Meniscal Repair System.  This is yet another example of Smith &
 Nephew's responsiveness to the needs of surgeons and their patients."
 
     About Smith & Nephew Inc., Endoscopy Division
     Smith & Nephew Endoscopy is a world leader in the development and
 commercialization of endoscopic techniques.  Within endoscopy, Smith & Nephew
 is the recognized world leader in arthroscopy (endoscopic procedures performed
 on articulating joints).  It is one of the core business units and is part of
 Smith & Nephew plc, a leading worldwide healthcare group operating in major
 growth markets and concentrated in the areas of wound management,
 orthopaedics, endoscopy and consumer healthcare.  With headquarters in London,
 the parent company offers more than 2,000 products marketed in more than
 90 countries.
     This press release contains forward-looking statements.  The Company
 wishes to caution the reader that actual results may differ from those
 discussed in the forward-looking statements and may be adversely affected by,
 among other things, risks associated with new product development and
 commercialization, clinical trials, intellectual property, regulatory
 approvals, competitive offerings, the Company's overall business strategy, and
 other factors described in the Company's filings with the Securities and
 Exchange Commission.
 
                     MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT -  Click Here
                http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X83613311
 
 

SOURCE Smith & Nephew, Inc.
    ANDOVER, Mass., April 23 /PRNewswire Interactive News Release/ -- Smith &
 Nephew, Inc., Endoscopy Division, today announced the global launch of its
 FasT-Fix(TM) Meniscal Repair System.  The FasT-Fix system is the first
 meniscal repair technique that combines the ease of use provided by meniscal
 repair implants with the strength of traditional suture repairs.  Until now,
 orthopedic surgeons have had to choose between less invasive implant
 techniques and stronger suture techniques.  The FasT-Fix System is the first
 easy-to-use suture-based implant that has the strength of the gold standard
 suture repair without the compromises associated with current meniscal
 implants.
     Suture techniques require the creation of an incision in the back of the
 knee resulting in extended operative time.  Faster techniques that eliminate
 this incision result in compromised fixation strength.  Laboratory testing at
 the University of Kentucky demonstrated that the fixation strength of the
 FasT-Fix device was equivalent to that of a vertical mattress suture stitch,
 the current strongest repair.  Suture-based repairs have an established
 history of long-term results, and are technically challenging, as these
 repairs require a posterior incision.  Subsequent clinical testing confirmed
 that the FasT-Fix system eliminated the technical hurdles without sacrificing
 strength.
     Dr. Lawrence Lemak from the Alabama Sports Medicine Institute, Birmingham,
 Alabama, stated, "It is a safe, effective technique: an excellent solution for
 all-inside repair."  Dr. David Caborn, Associate Professor of Orthopedic
 Surgery, Medical Director of Sports Medicine, at the University of Kentucky,
 states, "The FasT-Fix meniscal repair technique combines the biomechanical
 strength of the vertical mattress suture with the superior resistance to
 construct elongation: truly a first."
     The FasT-Fix system has changed the way Dr. Nicholas Sgaglione, Chief,
 Division of Sports Medicine, North Shore University Hospital, Manhasset, NY,
 repairs the meniscus.  "It gives me the speed and ease of use of meniscal
 implants with the security of the classic non-absorbable suture repair."  Ron
 Sparks, President of Smith & Nephew Endoscopy adds, "The meniscal repair
 market has grown significantly over the past three years as arthroscopic
 surgeons have shifted from sutures to new implantable devices.  Until now, no
 device has offered the strength of sutures and the ease of use offered by the
 FasT-Fix Meniscal Repair System.  This is yet another example of Smith &
 Nephew's responsiveness to the needs of surgeons and their patients."
 
     About Smith & Nephew Inc., Endoscopy Division
     Smith & Nephew Endoscopy is a world leader in the development and
 commercialization of endoscopic techniques.  Within endoscopy, Smith & Nephew
 is the recognized world leader in arthroscopy (endoscopic procedures performed
 on articulating joints).  It is one of the core business units and is part of
 Smith & Nephew plc, a leading worldwide healthcare group operating in major
 growth markets and concentrated in the areas of wound management,
 orthopaedics, endoscopy and consumer healthcare.  With headquarters in London,
 the parent company offers more than 2,000 products marketed in more than
 90 countries.
     This press release contains forward-looking statements.  The Company
 wishes to caution the reader that actual results may differ from those
 discussed in the forward-looking statements and may be adversely affected by,
 among other things, risks associated with new product development and
 commercialization, clinical trials, intellectual property, regulatory
 approvals, competitive offerings, the Company's overall business strategy, and
 other factors described in the Company's filings with the Securities and
 Exchange Commission.
 
                     MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT -  Click Here
                http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X83613311
 
 SOURCE  Smith & Nephew, Inc.