Medical tubing is an incredibly important component in many medical devices. Life-critical applications abound—balloon angioplasty, stent delivery, catheter-steering wires, suction lumen, cardiovascular catheters, urological retrieval devices, neurovascular procedures, and intravascular drug delivery systems are just a few.
Common types of medical tubing include:
- Extruded tubing—provides a great variety of dimensions, materials, and chemical and physical properties, such as lubricity and drug-eluting capabilities
- Polyimide tubing—polyimide is a popular material for medical tubing because of properties such as pushability, column strength, flexibility, and kink resistance
- Hybrid tubing—typically consists of a polyimide base laser with a thermoplastic outer layer that can be customized to provide highly specific physical properties, including conductivity through wires embedded with the tubing walls
- Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) liner tubing—because of its coefficient of friction, PTFE is ideal for catheter applications that require lubricity, biocompatibility, and chemical or thermal resistance
- Reinforced tubing—tubing that is typically custom-braided and coil-reinforced to add strength, kink resistance, and pushability for complex catheters and delivery systems, endoflators/inflation devices, and contrast injection lines
Laser Light Technologies works with a number of global medical tubing companies. In June 2020 Laser Light entered into a strategic partnership with Spectrum Plastics Group, the largest independent extruder of conventional and advanced medical tubing in North America. The collaboration will provide quick-turn, “off-the-shelf” extruded tubing with high-precision, laser-cut features, available for next-day delivery in North America and within three days for international destinations.
Laser Processing Methods
Lasers services for medical tubing include high-precision laser cutting and drilling, with micron-level tolerances. We produce micron-scale complex features in a variety of materials and patterns, with no heat effects or material damage.
Also in high demand are laser ablation and coating removal. These custom ablation processes selectively remove layers of substrate or coatings from precise locations using only laser energy. We remove a wide variety of coating materials, including polymers and metals.
Other services we provide medical tubing OEMs are:
- Clean room processing and packaging—class 100 and class 1000 clean room facilities for proprietary post process cleaning and packaging to prevent contamination after manufacturing
- Inventory management and supply chain management—provides on-site customized inventory management and supply chain management systems that provides a single point of contact for managing downstream vendors, reducing lead time and costs
Laser Light also partners with our clients to provide research and development support, including collaborative design consulting, prototyping, design for manufacturability, and manufacturing routing and integration set-up. For more information, contact the Laser Light Client Success Team.