The Healthcare Industry and Performance Plastics

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Harrington - Performance Plastics

The Smartest Way to Get Your Health to Perform Its Best

The healthcare industry changes and grows each year. Integral to the growth of the healthcare industry is innovation in performance plastics. Together with scientists and engineers, experts in performance plastics have been able to make their plans on paper come to life. The healthcare industry uses performance plastics for their ability to be lightweight, clear, flexible, easily bondable, and sterilized. Countless applications for performance plastics have helped improve outcomes of medical procedures and life expectancies.

Performance Plastics and Tubes

Consider CPAP machines which have helped to improve the quality of sleep for individuals afflicted by sleep apnea – a condition in which they stop breathing while sleeping because their airways are closed or blocked. CPAP machines have aided in decreasing the chances of heart failure and death. Virtually the entire unit is made of performance plastics such as silicone, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), and high-density polyethylene (HDPE).

You may have noticed the plethora of tubing on each unit if you have ever walked into a dialysis center – but what you cannot see is the miles of tubing that are behind the walls that afford patients the ability to prolong their life. Materials including PVC and ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) are used in special devices and mattresses have been developed to prevent blood clots and bed sores for patients that are in the hospital for any length of time with limited mobility or those that are bedridden.

To prevent bedsores, patients are placed on specially built mattresses that circulate water through tubing and channels so that the pressure on the body moves to different areas. To prevent blood clots in the legs, patients wear leg cuffs that tighten and relax at specific intervals to keep blood from pooling in areas of the body.

Hospital Acquired Infections (HAI’s) are a large liability and concern for hospitals and surgical facilities. Performance Plastics has helped by creating single-use kits. The ability to develop and produce tools that are fully assembled, sterilized and low cost has drastically reduced the number of HAI’s in the healthcare system. For each procedure that is going to take place, a different kit can be used that contains only the tools needed. Not only does the single-use kit reduce the chance of infection, but also the chance of using the wrong instrument and the need for sterilizing the tools used after the procedure.

Performance plastics are also used in all joint replacements. Joints contain cartilage – creating a cushion between the bones. In a joint replacement, scientists have had to develop a long-lasting material to do the work of cartilage. Different types of high-performance polyethylene have been used as a substitute for cartilage when replacing a joint; be it hip, knee, shoulder, etc…

The Performance Plastics Industry helps to heal and improve the health of our world.

What are Performance Plastics

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