The ever-increasing role of plastics in medical technology will be on ample display at the largest medical design and manufacturing event on the east coast, MD&M East 2014. Here is a small sampling of plastics-related products and services that will be highlighted at the show, which holds court at the Javits Convention Center in New York, NY, on June 10 to 12, 2014. The event is co-located with PLASTEC East.
Engineered Surface tubing from Zeus (Orangeburg, SC; booth 1703) increases lubricity while decreasing drag force without the use of fillers or additives. The technology can be applied to the inner and outer diameters of medical tubing extruded from a range of materials including PEEK, FEP, PFA, PVDF, ETFE, and nylon. The reduced coefficient of friction is enabled via microstructured channels, or reeds, that are formed during the extrusion process. Engineered Surface tubing is desirable for a range of minimally invasive medical procedures because its lubricity makes delivery of the treatment easier for surgeons and safer for patients, according to Zeus.
Heat- and light-stabilized polyether block amide copolymers from Foster Corp. (Putnam, CA; booth 1444) are engineered to resist oxidation and degradation during storage. Made from medical-grade polymers and USP Class VI–approved additives, the custom formulations support prolonged functional reliability in medical devices. They incorporate a targeted stabilizer system that can decompose and neutralize free radicals engendered by exposure to oxygen, heat, or ultraviolet light and thus help prevent loss of polymer properties.
Halkey-Roberts Corp. (St. Petersburg, FL; booth 2139) will showcase its DEHP-free Robertsite high-flow luer valves suitable for flushing and drainage, IV solution, and homecare use. Based on a proven valve technology, the valves are available with three different end configurations. The gamma-resistant, ISO 10993–compliant valves are designed to eliminate the chance of dripping or leakage when disconnected, with no clamping required.
Polymer solution casting
Avalon Laboratories LLC (Rancho Dominguez, CA; booth 445) will present its polymer solution casting technology that enables the production of medical tubular components in a single-piece design with no bonded joints. Variations in diameter, wall thickness, and material properties can be accommodated along the length of the parts. Using liquid polymers, the casting process allows Avalon Laboratories to embed tubular components in a range of configurations and imparts flexibility and strength seamlessly along the length of the shaft of laser-cut hypotubes.
Dual-wall heat-shrink tubing
TE Connectivity (Berwyn, PA ; booth 2320) will bring its innovative assembly method to MD&M East. The technology involving dual-wall heat-shrink tubing reportedly improves performance, reliability, and durability for catheters and other surgical instruments. By simplifying assembly and producing less scrap, the method can reduce manufacturing costs.
A company that supplies fully integrated services encompassing material selection, regulatory support, prototyping, testing and validation, manufacturing, cleanroom assembly, sterilization, packaging, and labeling to medical device manufacturers, Teleflex Medical OEM (Gurnee, IL; booth 1439) will showcase pliable Force Fiber orthopedic suture made of ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene. The company processes a range of absorbable and nonabsorbable materials, fiber sizes, and coatings to meet OEM requirements for strength, flexibility, and handling
Plas-Tech Engineering (Lake Geneva, WI; booth 2067) will highlight its Flowarray stopcocks for fluid management applications. The stopcocks, which include a visual aid for identifying flow control, are said to epitomize Plas-Tech's turnkey capabilities as a full-service medical device design and manufacturing partner. The product's success is attributed to early customer involvement, an understanding of functional attributes, efficient design, precision manufacturing, validation, packaging, and regulatory acumen.