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New biocompatible polymer for respiratory care solutions

New biocompatible polymer for respiratory care solutions

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Solvay, a leading global supplier of specialty polymers, announced that its biocompatible Udel® P-1700 polysulfone (PSU) helped Hanoi, Vietnam-based MTTS Company Ltd. to innovate its new Dolphin Bubble CPAP machine, which combines the latest in respiratory care with exceptional value. CPAP therapy – for continuous positive airway pressure – maintains open airways for pre-term and low-birth weight newborns who breathe spontaneously but often inadequately. Offering a sterilizable alternative to disposable polymer parts, Solvay’s Udel® PSU forms two injection-molded components of MTTS’s machine: the humidifier housing and the system’s positive end-expiratory pressure (PEEP) chamber.

“MTTS was established in 2004 with the goal of delivering innovative, cost-effective solutions for newborns in need of intensive medical care,” said Gregory Dajer, director of MTTS. “In designing our Dolphin CPAP system, we aimed to innovate a complete, non-invasive solution that was also more cost-efficient due to its integrated design and replacement of consumable components with reusable parts. Solvay played an instrumental role in our success. In addition to helping us select Udel® PSU polymer for key components, Solvay’s team supported us with molding expertise and relevant testing for healthcare applications.”

Bubble CPAP machines maintain pressure in the breathing circuit by immersing the distal end of the expiratory tubing in water. As the gas flows through the system, it “bubbles” out and prevents buildup of excess pressure. With funding help from The Wellcome Trust, a biomedical research charity based in London, MTTS built its Dolphin machine for comfort, reliability and ease of use. Its integrated design encompasses gas mixing, humidification, PEEP chamber, air compressor and pulse-oximeter in one compact unit. The PEEP chamber primarily improves oxygenation by increasing functional residual capacity and helps to improve lung compliance and decrease the work of breathing. MTTS received the CE mark in Europe for its system last year.

Udel® P-1700 PSU is a medical-grade, biocompatible polymer that maintains high-strength and toughness after repeated exposure to up to 100 autoclave sterilization cycles. The material is highly resistant to harsh chemical disinfectants commonly used in the healthcare industry, such as sodium hypochlorite bleach and 2.4 percent glutaraldehyde solution. It offers higher heat resistance and better hydrolytic stability than polycarbonate and exhibits low creep under sustained loads at elevated temperatures.

“MTTS’s integrated Dolphin CPAP system fulfills an important mission with an innovative simple solution and Solvay was gratified to play a role in its success,” said Jeff Hrivnak, global healthcare business manager for Solvay’s Specialty Polymers business unit. “One of several biocompatible resins available from our broad portfolio, Udel® PSU offers a unique combination of performance and value designed to help innovators like MTTS solve their design challenges and deliver ground-breaking new solutions.”

Solvay’s experience as a reliable materials supplier in the healthcare field spans more than 25 years. The company is a leading manufacturer of healthcare plastics, offering a broad range of high-performance, medical-grade plastics for orthopedics, sterilization cases and trays, medical and dental devices, as well as filtration media and housings for hemodialysis and water purification membranes. Solvay also offers a family of Solviva® Biomaterials for use in a range of implantable devices.


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