Construction & Drainage # 1972 Southampton
I should perhaps begin by explaining that the medical and surgical plastics in the context of this paper have nothing to do with plastic surgery.
Plastics pipes and fittings have found ready acceptance in the field of medicine and surgery. The wide choice of plastics available enable many of the traditional materials, e.g. glass, stainless steel and rubber, to be superseded to the benefit of the patient, the surgeon and of the cost of the Health Service generally.
The materials available to us range through the nylons, the high and low density polythenes, EVA, polypropylene and PPO, and perhaps most widely used of all, polyvinyl chloride. In this context, it is invariably heavily plasticised, so that we are talking of a flexible PVC tube. Aspects of material behaviour must necessarily take account not only of mechanical strengths, but also of processability, bio-compatibility, radio opacity, and also ability to withstand sterilisation. Our choice then is often a compromise to enable the more important aspects of these properties to be included.