Machine Design

ABS resins freeze out the competition

The First Option Uterine Cryoblation Therapy system from CryoGen Inc., San Diego, is used for intrauterine ablation. During the procedure the probe tip is cooled to –120°C but the rest of the instrument remains at room temperature. The pistol-grip handle and disposable control unit are made from two Lustran ABS resins. First Option is currently under FDA review.

Tissue freezing probes now sport acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) handles and control units. Two different ABS resin systems from Bayer Corp., Pittsburgh, are used in a new medical device that inserts inside the uterus during endometrial ablation.

The first resin, called Lustran 248, forms the device's pistol-grip handle. The other, Lustran 348, molds the unit's disposable control unit that slips over the cryoprobe.

The handle material withstands repeated radiation sterilizations, is heat and chemical resistant, and gives doctors a nice tactile grip. The material also holds tight tolerances — 0.0005 in. — for 12 pinholes in the handle's front section. The handle is a three-piece unit measuring 4.5 X 4.0 in. when assembled with wall thicknesses that vary from 0.07 to 0.1 in.

The triangular-shaped control unit is a disposable Lustran 348 resin and consists of a locking tube unit, shell, nose cone, and endcap. The 7.5-in.-long assembly has a diameter of 1.5 in. ±0.002 in., and has internal O-rings in its luer and fluid channels. Both the Lustran 248 and 348 resins have good strength, toughness, and rigidity.

Bayer Corp., 100 Bayer Rd., Pittsburgh, PA 15205, (800) 622-6004,

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