Complex extrusions open up design, quality and performance possibilities for medical tubing products, such as catheters, wound drains and hemodialysis tubing.
Dan Sanchez, Trelleborg Healthcare & MedicalMany medical tubing designers are increasingly looking to geometric transition extrusions manufactured of high consistency rubber (HCR) silicone. This process reduces the total cost of ownership for the original equipment manufacturer while improving part quality and greatly enhancing the types of devices being sought by healthcare providers.
Silicone is a proven material of choice for medical devices because of its purity and biocompatibility. It is also highly customizable, allowing it to be optimized for a wide range of devices that require radiopacity, conductivity and physical properties such as high tensile strength.
HCR silicone’s unique green strength — the strength of rubber in its unvulcanized state — allows for highly complex geometries in continuous extrusion processes, setting it apart from other types of polymers, such as polyurethanes, thermoplastics and room temperature vulcanizing (RTV) silicones. Used with a geometric transition extrusion process, such as Trelleborg’s GeoTrans, HCR extrusions can change cross-sections dramatically, opening up new possibilities in a wide range of medical devices, including wound drains, catheters and hemodialysis tubing.