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Covidien Rolls Out Meniscal Repair Instrument

Covidien Plc has introduced the AS Menisical Repair Device, the newest addition to the company’s line of sports injury devices. The device, which has been cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, is designed to allow orthopedic surgeons to perform “all-inside,” minimally invasive arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn meniscus in the knee using the gold standard “all-suture” method of fixation.

“Any meniscal repair system needs to deliver high-strength fixation in order to optimize the biologic healing potential,” said Bryan M. Huber, M.D., board certified orthopedic surgeon at Mansfield Orthopaedics in Stowe, Vt. “The AS Meniscal Repair Device enables surgeons to leverage the value of using the gold standard all-suture approach in a less invasive arthroscopic fashion.”

According to tests run by Covidien, sutures deployed by the device hold consistently without the need for anchors.

“In my practice, I have experienced a consistently high rate of firing success when using the AS Meniscal Repair Device, in stark comparison to other products on the market where I’ve experienced a significant misfire rate,” added Huber. “With an all-suture method of fixation, the AS Meniscal Repair Device eliminates any migration risk of broken tacks or anchors which could cause damage inside the knee and may lead to increased operative time during removal. The AS Meniscal Repair Device has improved my operative efficiency by delivering a high level of reliability and success.”

Covidien touts the device as designed for intuitive use. It reportedly works with one thumb slide actuation and no complex components. The specialty coated needles have laser-etched depth markings to facilitate accurate depth of penetration. The needles are available in two configurations: Curved and straight.

“Using feedback from our surgeon customers, we designed the AS Meniscal Repair Device to deliver optimal performance to address one of the fastest-growing orthopedic procedures performed today,” said Peter Marshall, director of research and development at Covidien.

A torn meniscus is a very common knee injury, particularly among athletes. According to a recent market analysis conducted by Millennium Research Group, in 2010 more than 840,000 procedures relating to meniscal injuries were performed in the United States. Millennium’s research indicates that in the United States, meniscus repair procedures utilizing fixation devices are expected to increase at an eight percent compound annual growth rate through 2015.

Covidien’s U.S. base is in Mansfield. Mass.

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