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Medical products for increasing requirements

Medical products for increasing requirements

News 19.03.2021

Medical devices are subject to ever-increasing requirements in terms of functionality and durability. This is the case, for example, for auto-injectors and injector pens, which patients use to administer therapeutic drugs themselves – so-called “drug delivery devices”. Patients expect these devices to work reliably every time they are used, whether at home or on-the-go. For these devices, Covestro offers two new families of the polycarbonate Makrolon®: improved low-friction types and maximum strength glass-filled products. The latter are also suitable for sophisticated surgical instruments.

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Patients expect self-medication auto-injectors to work reliably every time they use them – whether at home or on the road

Smoother movement without lubricants
The new low-friction polycarbonates Makrolon® M204 LF, Makrolon® M402 LF and Makrolon® M404 LF ensure that injections proceed smoothly and reliably – also without additional lubricants. Any place where plastic parts slide against one another, primarily in injectors, in the operating room and in patient care, the low-friction and wear-resistant plastics help facilitate the handling of devices. Covestro will showcase the new products in a customer webinar on March 30, 2021, from 3 to 4 pm CEST.

“With the new polycarbonates, we are helping medical device companies develop instruments for new trends in drug delivery devices,” says Irving Paz Chagoya, healthcare segment manager for polycarbonates in the Europe, Middle East, Africa region at Covestro. “In addition to the product advantages, they can also benefit from our more than 50 years of experience in the healthcare industry.” All new products are available worldwide.

The low-friction plastics also feature high dimensional stability and are superior in this respect to the competing material polyoxymethylene (POM). They also meet requirements in terms of durability, comply with ISO 10993-1 biocompatibility standards and can be sterilized using different methods, such as gamma radiation.

High and lasting strength
The new glass-filled polycarbonates are in demand when it comes to maximum strength and durability; for example, in surgical instruments and in drug delivery devices. The load-bearing interior parts of self medication devices are one example, particularly those with viscous or high-volume medicines. Single-use sterile instruments are a current trend in surgery for reducing the risk of infection. In addition, a solid thermoplastic polymer can be more efficient than a metal material.

These products are divided into two series with different strength levels. The high performance series includes the polycarbonates Makrolon® M810 GF, Makrolon® M820 GF and Makrolon® M830 GF. The high flow series includes the polycarbonates Makrolon® M410 GF, Makrolon® M420 GF and Makrolon® M430 GF. The latter are used for filling larger or thinner parts with improved productivity. All types are dimensionally stable and biocompatible according to ISO 10993-1.

Compared to the competitive product glass fiber reinforced polyamide, glass fiber filled polycarbonates exhibit a better combination of different properties when used for drug delivery devices and surgical instruments. This improves their resistance to humidity and temperature fluctuations as well as their mechanical properties. Aided by a special process called Rapid Heat Cycle Molding (RHCM), parts which require particularly glossy or smooth surfaces can be produced from these Makrolon® GF types.

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