Ethicon Reminds us of its Commitment to Thoracic Surgery

Here’s a new concept. You’ve got the product, so why not add a bit of a freshen up to your marketing efforts by offering it as part of a “procedural solution” to a surgical challenge?


Ethicon reminds us that its ECHELON FLEX™ Powered Vascular Stapler enables the most precise placement on fragile vessels. Built around this foundation stone the company is building a “procedural solution” which it has announced at this week’s American Association of Thoracic Surgery (AATS) Annual Meeting.

Said procedural solution includes a broad range of innovations intended to address the most pressing issues in thoracic surgery including bleeding, radiated tissue and challenging adhesions, as well as low adoption of minimally invasive techniques such as VATS. In essence it sounds like the company is providing a roadmap that includes all the elements necessary to ensure consistent outcomes from procedures involving its product.

Adding some beef to its “procedural focus”, the company has appointed thoracic surgeon Edmund Kassis, MD, as its first medical director for thoracic surgery. The appointment looks like it reinforces the message by having a suitably qualified physician guiding the development of new products, evidence generation and education and training.

So what does this “procedural solution” look like? Well, a whole lot of physician training by the looks of it. Ethicon says it continues to conduct global training for thousands of thoracic surgeons through numerous training events each year, which include team-based and individual, as well as regional, local and web-based programs. One example is the holding of a 2-day resident and fellows training course in June focused on Surgery for Stage 3 Lung Cancer, Complications of VATS Lobectomy and Minimally Invasive Esophagectomy, complete with an interactive faculty-led hands-on Tissue Lab.

Company comments

“In thoracic surgery, there is still a critical need to reduce variability in the procedure, and drive proficiency in performing minimally invasive procedures. To help solve those challenges, we are extending our commitment to thoracic surgery by developing evidence-based solutions and providing the training, education and research to support surgeons,” said new incumbent Dr. Kassis. “Lung cancer is a devastating disease and it’s imperative that we continue to partner with our customers around the world to develop comprehensive clinical evidence, education, and innovative procedural solutions—to ultimately benefit patients.”

“Through collaboration with surgeons, we continue to bring innovative solutions to market that are designed to enhance thoracic procedures, provide greater clinical and economic value for health systems and help improve outcomes for patients,” said Michael del Prado, Ethicon Group Chairman. “Today, we have a portfolio of products for all aspects of thoracic procedures, and we continue to find ways to bring innovation to both video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS), which continues to gain momentum, and traditional thoracotomy. In addition, we are making a deeper commitment to education, training and research all over the world so that clinicians have access to best practices, the latest data and techniques.”

Physician comments

“There is a significant clinical and economic value for thoracic surgeons and hospital systems to have a procedural solution that encompasses both treatment and training to help deliver consistent outcomes, procedural efficiency and clinician and patient satisfaction,” said Diego Gonzalez-Rivas, MD, FETCS, a paid consultant to Ethicon and head of minimally invasive thoracic surgery unit at Coruña Hospital .

Source: Ethicon, Inc.

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