Polyzen Introduces an Ultra Thin-Walled, Lay-Flat Tube for Use as a Barrier Sheath for Diagnostic Scopes

The evolution of an ultra-thin-walled, small-diameter urethane tube… Polyzen, Inc. has identified an unmet need in the medical device arena. Through an extensive background in polymer processing, Polyzen has leveraged its expertise in urethane formulation and compounded a solution that can be extruded as a small-diameter ultra-thin-walled tube. These tubes can be utilized as a disposable sheath for fiber optics or produced small and thin enough to pass through a 3 mm ID channel for a diagnostic scope.

Lay-flat tubing is a process that has been around for many years and is most commonly utilized in packaging applications. Typically these lay-flat tubes are extruded out of an olefin-based material, like polyethylene, and usually above 1.5″ in lay-flat width. Polyzen has found a need in which certain medical applications require a special polymer, like urethane or nylon, which is less than 1″ in lay-flat width and a relatively thin gauge.

“Polyzen has perfected the extrusion process for small-diameter, thin-walled lay-flat tubing,” says Rubin Shah, director of business development. “Expanding our capabilities beyond more ubiquitous higher-thickness tubes has given Polyzen a clear advantage over its competitors,” he adds.

The lay-flat tubing process is advantageous for the production of a seamless tube, which can be delivered in continuous roll length and cut to any size relevant to the specifications that are required. Applications for lay-flat tubing are extensive. In the medical realm, this process is now being utilized to construct sheaths to be used as barriers for colonoscopes, endoscopes, speculums, probes, and many other devices requiring protection from moisture, blood, or bacteria prevalent within the body. These sleeves provide a cost advantage over current practice of extensive cleaning or reprocessing.

Polyzen’s capabilities include, but are not limited to, producing thin-wall tubing with a gauge ranging from 0.001″ to 0.005″ with a tolerance of +/- 25% of thickness. The small-diameter lay-flat tubing can be extruded at a width ranging from 0.25″ up to 3″. All extrusions are done within a class-10,000 clean room environment.

Polyzen Inc. is a leading manufacturer of critical disposable components and devices and a recognized innovator in various polymer processes such as dip molding, thin-film RF welding, and medical balloon technologies within the medical device circles. Their extrusion capabilities encompass flat-die extrusion, blown-film extrusion, co-extrusion, and lamination.

About Polyzen

Polyzen, Inc. is a leading contract developer and manufacturer of custom medical-grade polymer components and products for medical device manufacturers worldwide. With fully equipped facilities in Apex, NC, we’re capable of taking any customer’s concept from prototype to full-scale production. We offer a variety of technologies and turnkey services to meet the most demanding application and regulatory challenges.

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