Wire-reinforced multilumen tubing for minimally invasive procedures is being introduced at MD&M West this week by Putnam Plastics, a PolyMedex Discovery Group company. While multilumen and braid-reinforced tubing constructions are not new, the combination of these technologies represents a significant advance for device engineers, according to the company.
Multilumen tubing offers two or more passageways, extruded in a single step, to enable gas and fluid management and delivery of mechanical and electrical instruments within minimally invasive devices. Dialysis catheters, for example, allow for blood to flow to and from the dialysis machine through separate lumens.
Reinforcements are available in coil or braid form, depending on therapeutic procedure requirements. Braided reinforcements increase burst strength and torque transmission, whereas coil reinforcements provide kink resistance. Intravascular catheters, for example, may be coil reinforced so that the shaft can be bent at sharp angles through vascular passageways without collapsing.
Conventional endoscopic devices consist of a large coil-reinforced single lumen extrusion with numerous smaller single lumens assembled within to provide working channels. This technique reduces the amount of available working space because of the wall thicknesses of each single extrusion and assembly of the final device is more complex. Coil-reinforced multilumen tubing consolidates these independent extrusions by increasing working space while reducing assembly time and cost, according to Putnam Plastics.