Boston Scientific Announces Strategic Alliance and Investment in Endoscopic Technologies Inc.
(February 18, 2004) -- Boston Scientific Corporation (NYSE: BSX) announced today that it has made an equity investment in and secured an exclusive option to acquire Endoscopic Technologies Inc. (ESTECH). The companies intend to continue a pre-existing collaboration in the development of less-invasive surgical tools for the treatment of arrhythmias, particularly atrial fibrillation. An arrhythmia is an abnormal heart rhythm or heart rate. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Atrial fibrillation is a form of reentrant atrial tachycardia, whereby the atria (upper chambers of the heart) have chaotic electrical activity without coordinated and effective atrial contractions. Atrial fibrillation is the most common cardiac arrhythmia, affecting more than two million patients in the U.S. The disease accounts for approximately 15 percent of all strokes in the U.S. Atrial fibrillation also significantly impairs quality of life and accounts for more than one million hospital admissions each year. Both the prevalence and incidence of atrial fibrillation are increasing over time due to the aging of the population.

For years, physicians have been seeking a means of treating atrial fibrillation without having to perform open-heart surgery. ESTECH develops less-invasive technologies that enable surgeons to access and manipulate the heart and perform cardiac procedures without open-heart surgery. The companies are collaborating in the development of devices that will facilitate a less-invasive endoscopic ablation procedure (EndoAFIB™) through the combination of ESTECH's cardiac surgery capabilities and Boston Scientific's ablation technology. An EndoAFIB procedure will enable many patients to have their arrhythmia treated by a less-invasive surgical approach.

"Boston Scientific has been working diligently over the years to provide clinical solutions to the suffering and needs of the atrial fibrillation population," said Tom Coen, President of Boston Scientific's Electrophysiology business. "Cardiothoracic surgeons have emerged as a key group treating atrial fibrillation and they are eager to expand their treatment options. We believe that our relationship with ESTECH will enable us to bring them the tools they are seeking."

Boston Scientific is a worldwide developer, manufacturer and marketer of medical devices whose products are used in a broad range of interventional medical specialties. For more information, please visit:

Endoscopic Technologies Inc. is a medical device development company dedicated to the development of technologies that enable less-invasive treatment of cardiac disease. The Company also offers a full platform of devices that allows beating heart surgery to treat coronary artery and valve disease. For more information, please visit:

This press release contains forward-looking statements. The Company wishes to caution the reader of this press release that actual results may differ from those discussed in the forward looking statements and may be adversely affected by, among other things, risks associated with new product development and commercialization, clinical trials, intellectual property, regulatory approvals, competitive offerings, integration of acquired companies, the Company's overall business strategy, and other factors described in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.