Materials and surface science institute MSSI develops medical alloy

20
Aug

Materials and surface science institute MSSI develops medical alloy

Scientists and engineers from the Materials and Surface Science Institute MSSI at the University of Limerick, Ireland, invented a new metal that will make medical devices inside the body more visible under x-ray. Many medical devices, such as stents and valves, are placed in the body through minimally invasive surgical procedures that are usually performed with the help of medical imaging such as x-ray fluoroscopy. Current materials used to make these devices do not show up well under x-ray.

“An ideal solution is a device that is fully visible under x-ray,” explains Syed Tofail, lead scientist, “but has to be based on approved alloys for medical devices. Many companies use gold or platinum to modify existing alloys, which improve x-ray visibility but are expensive. We identified a number of alloying elements that will make these devices as visible as those where platinum has been added to enhance the visibility, but at a significantly reduced cost. Tests on a prototype wire of the new alloy show potential for use in a number of products.”

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