TOCA (The Orthopedic Clinic Association) Performs First Meniscus Replacements in Arizona

TOCA (The Orthopedic Clinic Association) Performs First Meniscus Replacements in Arizona with NUsurface® Meniscus Implant: Phoenix Suns Physician Treats Local Resident with Persistent Knee Pain in SUN Clinical Trial – Dr. Thomas R. Carter.

PHOENIX, Arizona – March 24th, 2017 – TOCA (The Orthopedic Clinic Association), a one-stop resource for orthopedics in Arizona , and Active Implants, a company that develops orthopedic implant solutions, today announced that the first meniscus replacement procedures in Arizona were successfully performed by Dr. Tom Carter. TOCA is the only center in the state – and one of just 10 sites nationwide – enrolling patients with persistent knee pain caused by injured or deteriorating meniscus cartilage in the SUN trial, which is designed to assess the safety and effectiveness of the NUsurface® Meniscus Implant (pronounced “new surface”) in restoring function similar to that of a natural, healthy meniscus.

The first patient to receive the implant in Arizona was Sean Kirkman, a 47-year-old Phoenix resident and owner of Doggy Daze, who tore his meniscus 12 years ago after years of snow skiing and playing softball. Although he underwent several partial meniscectomies to treat the tear on his left knee, he experienced constant pain requiring him to wear a knee brace for the last 10 years in attempts to stabilize his knee. Kirkman’s knee was consistently throbbing with pain whether he was sitting, walking or playing sports. The pain became so intense, he had to quit playing softball.

The meniscus is a tissue pad between the thigh and shin bones. Once damaged, the meniscus has a very limited ability to heal. Over 1 million partial meniscectomies to remove or repair a torn meniscus are performed in the U.S. every year, about the same as the total number of hip and knee replacement surgeries combined. However, many patients still experience persistent knee pain following meniscus surgery.

“There aren’t many options for patients who experience persistent knee pain following meniscus surgery,” said Dr. Tom Carter, orthopedic surgeon at TOCA. “We hope the NUsurface implant alleviates pain in these patients, helps them delay or avoid knee replacement surgery, and gets them back to the activities they enjoy.”

Kirk received the NUsurface Meniscus Implant on October 20 through a small incision in his knee and completed a six-week rehabilitation program. Five months into his recovery, Kirk is most looking forward to getting back into snow skiing.

“My knee pain over the last 12 years was completely psyche changing as I was too young for knee replacement and had resigned myself to just living with the pain,” Kirk said. “A couple weeks after receiving the NUsurface Meniscus Implant, my debilitating knee pain had subsided and I no longer felt the need for a knee brace I had been wearing the last decade. I can finally walk around to places and resume my life.”

The NUsurface Meniscus Implant has been used in Europe under CE Mark since 2008 and Israel since 2011.

About the Clinical Trial
The SUN study (Safety Using NUsurface®) will enroll approximately 120 patients as part of regulatory process to gain approval from FDA to sell the device in the U.S. All patients who meet study requirements and agree to enter the trial are offered the NUsurface Meniscus Implant as treatment. Treatment with NUsurface in the SUN trial is eligible for coverage by Medicare and some private insurance companies. To be eligible for the study, participants must be between the ages of 30 and 75 and have pain after medial meniscus surgery that was performed at least six months ago. To learn more about the SUN study, please visit or call (844) 680-8951.

About the NUsurface® Meniscus Implant
The NUsurface® Meniscus Implant is an investigational treatment for patients with persistent knee pain following medial meniscus surgery. It is made from medical grade plastic and, as a result of its unique materials, composite structure and design, does not require fixation to bone or soft tissues. The NUsurface Meniscus Implant mimics the function of the natural meniscus and redistributes loads transmitted across the knee joint. Clinical trials are underway in the U.S., Europe and Israel to verify the safety and effectiveness of the NUsurface Meniscus Implant.

About TOCA (The Orthopedic Clinic Association)
TOCA (The Orthopedic Clinic Association) has served the Valley with orthopedic care since it was founded in 1949. TOCA is a one-stop resource for orthopedics in Arizona, led by nationally recognized, established orthopedic physicians who are passionate about quality care. TOCA brings expertise in orthopedics and sports medicine, numerous sub-specialties, physical therapy and hand therapy. Each TOCA Physician brings their own passion and integrity to a common purpose, honoring TOCA’s mission statement: “Serving our Patients through Innovative and Comprehensive Orthopedic Care.” Our physicians and staff are dedicated to providing for each person’s needs and ensuring the highest level of care for a wide range of musculoskeletal conditions. For more information, visit

About Active Implants
Active Implants, LLC develops orthopedic implant solutions that complement the natural biomechanics of the musculoskeletal system, allowing patients to maintain or return to an active lifestyle. Active Implants is privately held with headquarters in Memphis, Tennessee. European offices are in Driebergen, The Netherlands, with R&D facilities in Netanya, Israel. For more information, visit


CAUTION Investigational device. Limited by United States law to investigational use.

To learn more or to schedule a consultation with Dr. Carter visit or call 602-277-6211!

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