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Smith & Nephew Enables Minimally Invasive and Anterior Approach Hip Replacement Surgeries With Launch of Modular, Mini Hip Stem

MEMPHIS, Tenn., Feb. 18, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- At this week's annual meeting of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, Smith & Nephew (NYSE: SNN, LSE: SN) Orthopaedic Division introduced its Short Modular Femoral (SMF™) Hip System, a modular total hip replacement stem system that exceeds the versatility and neck strength of a standard, full-size primary hip stem, while providing the stability of the traditionally longer, more invasive implant.  With this new design technology, surgeons can more efficiently implant Smith & Nephew's proprietary VERILAST™ advanced bearing material via the full range of surgical techniques.

The SMF Hip is 20-percent shorter than conventional hip stems while also allowing less healthy bone to be removed from the femoral neck. This bone-conserving design delivers a wider range of options should future surgeries be required. Further, due to its reduced size, surgeons can implant it through smaller incisions or through an anterior incision, which minimizes soft tissue trauma and speeds patients' return to active mobility.

The SMF hip system modular neck options give the surgeon the opportunity to more closely replicate their patients' natural anatomy.  Made from cobalt chrome, these modular necks exceed the fatigue strength of other modular neck hip implants, which are most often made from titanium.

Prior to its launch, Smith & Nephew performed a radiostereometric analysis (RSA) on the SMF stem, a study that measures the relative position of tiny metal markers in the implant to the surrounding bone in order to assess the stem's movement and stability post-operatively. The results indicate that the SMF stem had comparable post-operative stability during the crucial first year of fixation as Smith & Nephew's clinically proven, full-size Synergy hip stem.

"The SMF Hip System combines in one implant many of the leading trends in total hip replacement surgery—less invasive and anterior approach surgical techniques, bone conservation, and advanced bearing options," said Joseph M. DeVivo, president of Smith & Nephew Orthopaedics. "The SMF hip illustrates our drive to deliver new technology for active patients who suffer from osteoarthritis hip pain."

About VERILAST Technology

The SMF Hip System offers surgeons seven unique femoral neck positions, which allows them to choose from among Smith & Nephew's portfolio of advanced bearing combinations. For instance, VERILAST Technology, available exclusively from Smith & Nephew, consists of femoral heads made from OXINIUM™ Oxidized Zirconium articulating on highly cross-linked polyethylene. OXINIUM material is a metal alloy whose surface takes on the hard, wear-reducing properties of ceramic during a proprietary heating process, while retaining the strength of the underlying metal. Since it has the abrasion resistance of a ceramic, it reduces implant wear by 98-percent(1) when coupled with a cross-linked polyethylene cup, compared to traditionally used implant materials (cobalt chrome and standard polyethylene).

About Smith & Nephew

Smith & Nephew is a global medical technology business with global leadership positions in Orthopaedics; including Reconstruction, Trauma and Clinical Therapies; Endoscopy; including Sports Medicine; and Advanced Wound Management. Smith & Nephew is a global leader in arthroscopy and advanced wound management and is one of the leading global orthopaedics companies.

Smith & Nephew is dedicated to helping improve people's lives. The Company prides itself on the strength of its relationships with its surgeons and professional healthcare customers, with whom its name is synonymous with high standards of performance, innovation and trust. The Company has distribution channels, purchasing agents and buying entities in over 90 countries worldwide. Annual sales in 2010 were $4 billion.

Caution Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

This document contains certain forward-looking statements that may or may not prove accurate.  For example, statements regarding expected revenue growth and trading margins, market trends and our product pipeline are forward-looking statements.  Phrases such as "aim", "plan", "intend", "anticipate", "well-placed", "believe", "estimate", "expect", "target", "consider" and similar expressions are generally intended to identify forward-looking statements.  Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from what is expressed or implied by the statements. For Smith & Nephew, these factors include: economic and financial conditions in the markets we serve, especially those affecting health care providers, payors and customers; price levels for established and innovative medical devices; developments in medical technology; regulatory approvals, reimbursement decisions or other government actions; product defects or recalls; litigation relating to patent or other claims; legal compliance risks and related investigative, remedial or enforcement actions; strategic actions, including acquisitions and dispositions and our success in integrating acquired businesses; and numerous other matters that affect us or our markets, including those of a political, economic, business or competitive nature.  Please refer to the documents that Smith & Nephew has filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission under the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, including Smith & Nephew's most recent annual report on Form 20F, for a discussion of certain of these factors.

Any forward-looking statement is based on information available to Smith & Nephew as of the date of the statement.  All written or oral forward-looking statements attributable to Smith & Nephew are qualified by this caution.  Smith & Nephew does not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement to reflect any change in circumstances or in Smith & Nephew's expectations.

* Trademark of Smith & Nephew.  Certain marks registered US Patent and Trademark Office.

(1) Parikh, A., Hill P., Hines G., and Pawar V., "Wear of Conventional and Highly Crosslinked Polyethylene Liners during Simulated Fast Walking/Jogging", Trans. Orthop. Res. Soc., vol. 34, 2009, p. 2340.

SOURCE Smith & Nephew
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