Ashley Brindamour AVG Blog November 30, 2020

Shoulder Innovations: Advancing Shoulder Replacement Options

New concept addresses the most common complication of shoulder replacement surgery

Shoulder Innovations: Advancing Shoulder Replacement Options

November 30, 2020 | Ashley Brindamour

Nearly 50,000 total shoulder arthroplasty (TSA) surgeries are performed in the U.S. annually to treat issues ranging from rotator cuff tears, instability, and fractures to Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis. A case report published by the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery states that the overall complication rate of TSA surgery is between 12 and 39 percent. A majority of these complications are related to the loosening of the shoulder joint socket known as the glenoid.

Shoulder Innovations, an Alumni Ventures Group portfolio company, is creating a better approach to TSA surgery through the use of the InSet glenoid. Unlike other life science startups, this company’s product has already achieved nine years of highly successful results and generated substantial revenue. 


The InSet Glenoid Solution and How It Works

Company founder Dr. Steve Gunther explains the cause of traditional TSA surgery complications and how the company was able to find a solution through the invention of the InSet Glenoid.



What We Liked About the Deal

Advanced and Efficient Product: Backed by 5 patents (10 pending), the inSet glenoid has already demonstrated high quality and efficacy. Peer-reviewed research shows that Shoulder Innovations’ product produces 40x increased stability and an 87% reduction in the “rocking horse” motion of the shoulder joint.

Long-term Vision and Current Success:  There are 75 active practitioners across the country using the inSet glenoid implant, and over 1,300 cases have been successfully performed. Additionally, the company has a second product about to be approved, which will result in access to 85% of the market, as well as a product roadmap to get to complete coverage.

Substantial Function Improvement: The success rate of existing shoulder implants is less than 50 percent after 10 years, while Shoulder Innovations subjects have shown 100% survivability of their implants after nine years. 

Experienced Lead Investor: USVP has a lengthy track record of success investing in healthcare, and lead investor Casey Tansey brings medical device experience as both an operator and investor. 


Generating Substantial Alumni Connections 

Alumni Ventures Group’s investment in Shoulder Innovations was led by Green D Ventures, a fund for Dartmouth alumni and friends. Green D connected with the company through a relationship with Founder and Board Member Stephen Gunther, a Dartmouth Medical School graduate.

Shoulder Innovations raised a Series C round of $21.6 million led by US Venture Partners and Lightstone Ventures, with participation from Wakestream Ventures, Biosciences Research and Commercialization Center of Western Michigan University, Invest Michigan, and the Michigan Angel Fund.


Feature Photo: LouisvilleUSACE

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