New evidence demonstrates Smith+Nephew’s COBLATION™ Technology can accelerate patient recovery with fewer complications compared with total tonsillectomy techniques

March 23, 2023

Smith+Nephew (LSE:SN, NYSE:SNN), the global medical technology company, today announces results from new scientific research that shows its COBLATION Intracapsular Tonsillectomy (CIT) technique can lead to improved post-operative outcomes in patients versus total tonsillectomy techniques. The research was recently published online by OTO Open: The Open Access Journal of the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Foundation.

The research – a systematic literature review with meta-analysis – evaluated 17 clinical studies on 6,501 paediatric and adult patients who received either CIT or total tonsillectomy for recurrent tonsillitis or obstructive sleep apnoea over a twenty-year period. It demonstrates that, compared to total tonsillectomy, patients who received CIT presented the following improved outcomes:

  • Fewer post-operative complications: 64% less likely to experience post-tonsillectomy haemorrhage* (PTH).1
  • Reduction in pain severity, duration and post-operative analgesia use: Pain scores at day one and week one were significantly lower, average time to pain-free was reduced by 4.2 days, and average duration of analgesia use was reduced by 4.1 days.1
  • Faster return to normal activity and diet: On average, patients reported a return to normal activity 2.8 days faster and a return to normal diet 3.5 days faster.1

“We are thrilled to share the findings of this meta-analysis,” said Meghan Mavity, Vice President and General Manager Global ENT for Smith+Nephew. “The impact that this technology and technique have on patient outcomes is clear and reflects our commitment to ensuring surgeons have the tools they need to make a significant improvement in patients’ lives.”

COBLATION Intracapsular Tonsillectomy involves the removal of all, or the majority, of tonsil tissue while maintaining the integrity of the underlying capsule. By comparison, traditional total tonsillectomy removes all tonsil tissue as well as the underlying capsule, which results in exposure of the muscle bed and the blood vessels that lie within the muscle. CIT is achieved using COBLATION Technology, proprietary to Smith+Nephew, which creates a controlled, stable plasma field at a low relative temperature, resulting in minimal thermal damage and precise removal of surrounding soft tissue. Intracapsular Tonsillectomy is growing in popularity with 20% of paediatric otolaryngologists performing this procedure in the US.2

About Smith+Nephew

Smith+Nephew is a portfolio medical technology business focused on the repair, regeneration and replacement of soft and hard tissue. We exist to restore people’s bodies and their self-belief by using technology to take the limits off living. We call this purpose ‘Life Unlimited’. Our 19,000 employees deliver this mission every day, making a difference to patients’ lives through the excellence of our product portfolio, and the invention and application of new technologies across our three global franchises of Orthopaedics, Sports Medicine & ENT and Advanced Wound Management.

Founded in Hull, UK, in 1856, we now operate in more than 100 countries, and generated annual sales of $5.2 billion in 2022. Smith+Nephew is a constituent of the FTSE100 (LSE:SN, NYSE:SNN). The terms ‘Group’ and ‘Smith+Nephew’ are used to refer to Smith & Nephew plc and its consolidated subsidiaries, unless the context requires otherwise.

For more information about Smith+Nephew, please visit

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