Memorial plaque for J.U. Adams and I.M. Pease
Surgical Appliance Industries (SAI) got its start in
1893, founded as the Ohio Truss Company (“OTC”), by Joel Adams and his son-in-law
Isaac Pease. The two had become partners some years earlier by manufacturing livery
items like leather saddles and bridles and selling them in the bustling Port of
Cincinnati to settlers on their way west. However, the advent of the automobile
meant the end of the line for many businesses like this.
Looking around for another opportunity suited to their particular talents and expertise,
Joel and Isaac came upon the idea of manufacturing hernia trusses and abdominal
supports. The pair would pack their wares into trunks and travel by train throughout
Ohio, selling off their goods along the way. Real growth for their company was jump-started,
however, when they engaged the services of a sales group from a defunct candy company
who had excellent contacts among pharmacists.
Over the years the company’s product line has evolved with the times, with emphasis
shifting from trusses to orthopedic garments since the 1940s, along with mobility
and convalescent aids since the ‘50s, mastectomy products since the ‘60s, and compression
therapy products since the mid-‘90s.
Compression products manufacturing
Today SAI’s products are divided into
four major brand categories:
- Truform Therapeutic Compression Hosiery: A sensible mix of the
most commonly prescribed styles at a price point significantly lower than leading
- Truform•OTC Orthotics and Prosthetics: A complete line of prescription
off-the-shelf products for the spine and extremities, including the OTC Professional
Orthopaedic brand of retail packaged supports.
- Airway: Products for women who have had surgery for breast cancer,
including breast forms, bras and accessory items.
- PCP-Champion: Manufacturer and distributor of mobility and home
convalescent aids, and including the Champion Professional Neoprene
brand of retail packaged sports and orthotic supports.
Since the late nineteenth century SAI has prospered through five generations of
family ownership. The company's mission has never has been to simply "stay the course",
rather it has been to expect and respect change in the industry and be prepared
to act quickly on what you hear, see, and most importantly, feel.
Company headquarters and manufacturing, Cincinnati, Ohio
Not only is this what SAI has done consistently in the past, it is what continues
to guide it toward the future.