From the earliest times of Mesoamericans to the modern times, the use of plastic has been employed to carry out the construction of various items all over the world. It has evolved tremendously to suit the requirements of the ever increasing demands of the human race. The use of plastic is extensively based on its durability and reliability amongst other qualities. Of all the construction materials available, plastic is the only substance which is used in a variety of forms.
Polymers have been of pivotal importance to humankind ever since 1600 B.C. With the invention of vulcanized rubber in the year 1839 and the discovery of polystyrene (PS) by an apothecary of German origin in the same year, there has been no looking back at the widespread utility of plastics around the world. Before commencing onto the advantages of using plastics in the world of Science and Medicine, you should know about the various kinds of plastic being utilized in this field
What Are They Used For?
With the recognition of their various advantages, the usage of plastics is growing widespread with every passing year. The various kinds of biocompatible plastics that are used in the medical field and their area of usage are listed below:
- Polyvinylchloride (PVC) – Blood bags and tubing
- Polyethersulfone (PES) – Catheters
- Polytetrafluroethylene (PTFE) – Synthetic blood vessels, endoscopes, soft tissue regeneration patches
- Polyethylene – (PE-LD/HD) – Artificial tendons, Orthopedic sutures, surgical cables
- Polyurethane (PU) – Wound dressings that allow passage of air
- Polyetherimide (PEI) – Reusable applications and surgical skin staplers
- Polycarbonate (PC) – Tubing connectors, Transparent valves
- Polysulfone (PS) – Artificial cardiac parts, clams.
- Polyetheretherketone (PEEK) – Rigid Tubing, Dental products
- Polypropylene (PP) – Cardiac valves
- Increased malleability
- Low production cost
- Less toxicity
- Increased chemical inertness
- Insolubility in liquid medium
- Increased biocompatibility
- Long life of implants
- Strong and light weight
- Resistant to corrosion
- Non – ferromagnetic
- Increased osseointegration
The Final Word
Keeping in mind the above advantages of plastic, it is widely chosen for practical applications in the field of medicine.
Examples of how plastic is used today: