Medical tubing extruder sources SBC as PVC replacement


Setting aside the science-based rationale for sourcing flexible PVC replacement materials for medical devices, the commercial imperative for doing so is undeniable. Healthcare facilities around the world are reducing or phasing out the use of PVC and phthalates in medical devices: Kaiser Permanente, which spends $1 billion annually on medical supplies, no longer buys IV medical equipment made with PVC and DEHP-type plasticizers and, starting in July 2015, the use of tubes containing DEHP will be banned in French paediatric, neonatology, and maternity wards. Indications are that the ban may be extended to all medical devices used in French hospitals. Other examples abound. Consequently, industry has ramped up efforts to find alternative materials. A recent case in point is medical tubing extruder Microspec (Peterborough, NH), which has partnered with Styrolution (Frankfurt, Germany) to replace the PVC in its flexible multilumen tubing with a styrene-butadiene block copolymer (SBC).

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