Active screen plasma nitriding (ASPN) is a well-established technique used for the surface modification of materials, the result of which is often a product with enhanced functional performance. Here we report the modification of the chemical and mechanical properties of ultra-high molecular weight poly(ethylene) (UHMWPE) using 80:20 (v/v) N2/H2 ASPN, followed by growth of 3T3 fibroblasts on the treated and untreated polymer surfaces. ASPN-treated UHMWPE showed extensive fibroblast attachment within 3 h of seeding, whereas fibroblasts did not successfully attach to untreated UHMWPE. Fibroblast-coated surfaces were maintained for up to 28 days, monitoring their metabolic activity and morphology throughout. The chemical properties of the ASPN-treated UHMWPE surface were studied using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, revealing the presence of Csingle bondN, Cdouble bondN, and Ctriple bondN chemical bonds. The elastic modulus, surface topography, and adhesion properties of the ASPN-treated UHMWPE surface were studied over 28 days during sample storage under ambient conditions and during immersion in two commonly used cell culture media.