Silicone Tubing for Long-Term Implants

Silicone Tubing for Long-Term Implants

Trelleborg’s healthcare and medical operation presented innovative silicone tubing for long-term implants at the Medical Tubing Conference in Berlin.

As a competent and responsible supplier, we support our customers in the development of products, manufacturing processes and materials used in medical technology, the pharmaceutical industry and biotechnology. On June 25 and 26, 2019, Trelleborg presented its medical silicone tubes for various long-term implants at the Medical Tubing Conference in Berlin.

Due to its good biocompatibility properties, silicone is used in numerous medical and pharmaceutical applications. Silicone is available in a variety of hardnesses and can withstand a wide temperature range. Certain types of materials are approved for implantation and are used, for example, in cardiac pacemakers, catheters and various other applications. With its specialized and advanced processes, Trelleborg can provide a wide range of high quality silicone solutions and materials to the industry. These include high-quality, hygienic and safe sealing solutions and customer-specific molded parts, which protect the most sensitive medical technology as seals against contamination or other adverse effects and ensure the safety of patients.

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"Medical silicone components have ever more complex features, especially when it comes to long-term implants," says Peter Krass, Business Development Manager, Lead Group Healthcare & Medical Europe at Trelleborg. "We ensure that our manufacturing processes and components made of elastomer and thermoplastic materials not only meet the high demands of our customers in the medical technology and pharmaceutical industries, but also meet the increasing quality and purity requirements in the market."

Silicone tubes, in particular, play an important role in medical applications because of their biocompatibility and physical resistance. In the body they act as a conduit to carry liquids or as insulators for cables and sensors. The products have to meet high demands on precision, control and process stability and at the same time be implantable for several years. Trelleborg has developed a range of specialty hoses based on its patented GeoTrans extrusion process, available in a variety of sizes and developed with customers. These include multi-lumen tubing and flexible, kink-resistant KRT (Knick Resistant Tubing) tubing with a plastic spring core for minimally invasive instruments, catheters and probes.

As an expert in silicones, Trelleborg is also developing applications for implantable silicones as drug carriers. Here, the company relies on specific methods to equip silicone tubing, gaskets, molded parts, or films with drug actives (APIs). This plays an important role especially for manufacturers of long-term implants, in whose use it can come in hospitals again and again to infections.

"For many years now, we have provided silicone-based hoses and molded parts for the health and medical sector as well as elastomer and polymer seals for medical and pharmaceutical devices," says Peter Krass. "The main buyers of these products at the moment are the USA. Our goal is to further strengthen this market area in Europe as well. "

Trelleborg has invested in the production of specialized LSR (Liquid Silicone Rubber) in Bulgaria and Switzerland as well as in the USA. In 2016, the sealant expert acquired SSF (Specialty Silicone Fabricators), one of the world's leading manufacturers of high-precision medical components and devices, including silicone-based implants. In early 2019, Trelleborg acquired Sil-Pro, a US based manufacturer of silicone and thermoplastic components for healthcare, expanding its expertise in this area.

Trelleborg showcased its innovative silicone solutions at the Medical Tubing Conference, to be held on June 25-26, 2019 in Berlin. The conference with internationally renowned experts deals with trends and developments around medical tubes and catheters made of polymers.