WARSAW, Ind., Feb 22, 2005 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ -- Zimmer Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: ZMH; SWX: ZMH), a worldwide leader in the orthopaedics industry, announced today that the first electromagnetic Computer-Assisted Solutions(TM) knee replacement procedure was successfully performed on February 14, 2005, at The Methodist Hospital in Houston, Texas. Dr. David Lionberger, an orthopaedic surgeon at Methodist, performed three successful navigation assisted procedures using the Zimmer Minimally Invasive Solutions(TM) (MIS(TM)) Quad-Sparing(TM) Total Knee Replacement Procedure and Medtronic Navigation's proprietary StealthStation(R) with the AxiEM electromagnetic computer assisted system.
Zimmer and Medtronic Navigation, who have an exclusive partnership for MIS surgical navigation solutions, developed the proprietary system, which involves computer-assisted equipment, software and Zimmer instruments. Centerpulse AG, which Zimmer acquired in 2003, had been previously involved in development of electromagnetics for orthopaedic navigation, but the Zimmer/Medtronic collaboration is the first to produce a successful system for widespread commercialization. In January 2005, a 510(k) was cleared, allowing the Zimmer system to be used in conjunction with orthopaedic knee procedures.
"With the launch of our electromagnetic system, we have taken a great step forward in enabling a significant number of orthopaedic surgeons to provide patients the benefits of MIS Quad-Sparing Knee Replacement, and later this year we will launch, along with Medtronic Navigation, a similar electromagnetic system for Zimmer MIS hip replacements," said Ray Elliott, Zimmer Chairman, President and CEO. "This system was designed to give the surgeon leg alignment and other anatomical information about the knee during surgery to help improve patient outcomes. We will offer the system on a portable platform and with economics that make navigation accessible to more of our hospital customers. Our electromagnetic system is a perfect fit for our MIS surgical techniques that entail less visibility."
Electromagnetic tracking systems are an alternative which enable significantly more minimally invasive surgical techniques than the use of infrared camera technology used in the market today. The term "electromagnetic" refers to the method used to locate and track the implants and instruments relative to patient anatomy. The technology consists of an electromagnetic field transmitter that generates a local magnetic field around a specific area of anatomy. The localization system, armed with magnetic sensors, is able to identify the position of instrumentation. The system's ability to track the implant and instrument positions is not related to line of sight relative to the emitter. Electromagnetic mini reference trackers are attached to the patient's bones and the surgical instruments, producing a real-time, three-dimensional video display of the surgical procedure.
Dr. Lionberger, who performed the first orthopaedic electromagnetic procedures, has used other computer-assisted equipment and described the AxiEM system as a great advance for patients and surgeons. "This system delivers what we, as orthopaedic surgeons, have been waiting for," said Dr. Lionberger. "The potential patient benefits of minimally invasive joint replacement are tremendous, but the techniques involved are new and often more difficult, and can be especially challenging with limited visibility. Now we have a means of accurately determining proper implant alignment and placement even while working through much smaller incisions such as minimally invasive surgical procedures. I look forward to continuing to utilize electromagnetic navigation in my own practice and to demonstrate to my colleagues how they can apply it in their practices."
Compared to traditional knee replacement surgery, the Zimmer MIS Quad- Sparing procedure has as its goals several benefits to patients, including: less tissue trauma; faster and less painful rehabilitation; smaller incisions; less scarring; a shorter hospital stay; and a faster return to work and leisure activities.
Zimmer and Medtronic Navigation plan to demonstrate the electromagnetic system at the upcoming American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons meeting in Washington, D.C., and officially launch the system worldwide in July of this year.
About The Methodist Hospital
The Methodist Hospital, established in Houston, Texas, in 1919, is one of the nation's largest private, non-profit hospitals and is a charter member of the Texas Medical Center. The Methodist Hospital is the flagship of The Methodist Hospital System, with four hospital locations and more than 2,500 physicians on its medical staff. Home to famed heart surgeon Dr. Michael DeBakey, Methodist continues its long-standing tradition of dedication to excellence in patient care and compassion. The hospital is ranked among the country's top centers in U.S. News & World Report's America's Best Hospitals annual report. The Methodist Hospital's primary academic affiliation is with Weill Cornell Medical College and New York-Presbyterian Hospital. For more information on The Methodist Hospital System, please visit http://www.methodisthealth.com or call (713) 790-3333.
About Medtronic Navigation
Medtronic Navigation is the world's leading supplier of integrated surgical navigation solutions. With nearly 2,000 StealthStation(R) Systems installed worldwide, Medtronic Navigation surpasses the combined installed base of all other manufacturers of navigation solutions. In less than fifteen years, Medtronic Navigation has grown from eight inspired visionaries to an established team of more than 350 professionals worldwide including engineering, customer support, regulatory, sales, and operations experts dedicated to expanding the boundaries, utilization, and variety of procedures for computer-assisted navigation solutions. With a focus on surgeon-centric design, comprehensive customer support, and a well-funded research program, Medtronic Navigation is committed to providing new and current customers with the leading-edge technology that will assist in improving surgical outcomes today and in years to come.
Founded in 1927 and headquartered in Warsaw, Indiana, Zimmer is the worldwide #1 pure-play orthopaedic leader in designing, developing, manufacturing and marketing reconstructive and spinal implants, trauma and related orthopaedic surgical products. In October 2003, the Company finalized its acquisition of Centerpulse AG, a Switzerland-based orthopaedics company and the leader in the European reconstructive market. Zimmer has operations in more than 24 countries around the world and sells products in more than 100 countries. Zimmer's 2004 sales were approximately $3 billion. The Company is supported by the efforts of more than 6,500 employees worldwide.
Visit Zimmer on the worldwide web at http://www.zimmer.com
Zimmer Safe Harbor Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 based on current expectations, estimates, forecasts and projections about the orthopaedics industry, management's beliefs and assumptions made by management. Forward-looking statements may be identified by the use of forward-looking terms such as "may," "will," "expects," "believes," "anticipates," "plans," "estimates," "projects," "targets," "forecasts," and "seeks" or the negative of such terms or other variations on such terms or comparable terminology. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions that could cause actual outcomes and results to differ materially. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, our ability to successfully integrate Centerpulse AG and Implex Corp., the outcome of the pending informal SEC investigation of Centerpulse accounting, price and product competition, rapid technological development, demographic changes, dependence on new product development, the mix of our products and services, supply and prices of raw materials and products, customer demand for our products and services, control of costs and expenses, our ability to form and implement alliances, international growth, governmental laws and regulations affecting our U.S. and international businesses, including tax obligations and risks, product liability and intellectual property litigation losses, reimbursement levels from third-party payors, general industry and market conditions and growth rates and general domestic and international economic conditions including interest rate and currency exchange rate fluctuations. For a further list and description of such risks and uncertainties, see the disclosure materials filed by Zimmer with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Zimmer disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Readers of this document are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, since, while we believe the assumptions on which the forward-looking statements are based are reasonable, there can be no assurance that these forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate. This cautionary statement is applicable to all forward-looking statements contained in this document.
SOURCE Zimmer Holdings, Inc.
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