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Solvay's Radel PPSU used to produce fully adjustable plastic positioning support for surgery

solvay_20110712_cprjSolvay Advanced Polymers, LLC, a Solvay Specialty Polymers company and global supplier

of high-performance polymers, announced on July 8 that Tri-Medics, LLC, a US-based manufacturer of medical devices and instrumentation, has developed the industry’s first fully adjustable plastic positioning support for orthopedic trauma surgery with Solvay’s Radel polyphenylsulfone (PPSU) resin.

The Bender triangle is adjustable to the human anatomy, simplifies surgical procedures, and decreases operating room time, according to Bradley Bender, Tri-Medics President and inventor of the patented device. It is an effective alternative to expensive and more complicated fixed positioning supports made of foam rubber and metal.

“This one-of-kind device gives surgeons a broader view as well as greater control and precision,” said Mr Bender. “Radel PPSU played a major role by delivering high strength and radio translucence.”

Radel PPSU offers high strength during intramedullary (IM) nailing of the femur and tibia and other manipulative actions. The device is used for universal positioning for IM nailing, plating, and external fixation applications, stated Solvay.

The Bender consists of three injection molded adjustable sides that form a triangular structure or as a single unit for an optimum starting point during IM nailing of the tibia. The triangle allows the surgeon to freely adjust the positioning of the patient extremities as needed for specific procedures. It can be configured to any angle or height as a unit or segmented for hyper-flexion and optimal exposure.

As said in the press release, Radel PPSU also offers excellent chemical resistance and withstands repeated autoclaving – up to 1,000 cycles – while maintaining its toughness and impact resistance. The material is a super-tough transparent thermoplastic with a heat distortion temperature (HDT) of 207°C.

The Bender triangle – which consists of three sides and three pivot corners – is made entirely of Radel PPSU, except for six stainless steel nuts, according to designer Jeffrey Kapec, Co-Principal and Executive Vice President of Tanaka Kapec Design Group, an industrial design and product development firm in the US. The four-pound device slides together and is assembled with pins made of Radel PPSU.

Radel PPSU beat out competitive thermoplastics such as polyetherimide (PEI), polyetheretherketone (PEEK), and polycarbonate (PC) due to a number of performance attributes including processability and repeated autoclaving without warping. The 30cm long sides injection molded by General Pattern were made in 0.5cm thick sections without sink marks, according to Kapec.


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