Medical Musings: New materials race to replace PVC


Hospitals are beginning drives to replace polyvinyl chloride in intravenous tubing and film bags.

It's not clear, however, that the technology is immediately ready to step up to the plate with effective, reasonably priced solutions that can be mass produced.

I've been trying to piece this together in recent months and following is my understanding of the state of the art.

The most likely replacements on the short-term horizon are elastomers based on polyethylene, polypropylene, and styrene. Hospitals want something that feels like PVC, and that points to elastomers.

TPEs loom large

TPEs have been used in many important medical applications due to their purity, recyclability and relative cost effectiveness....
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