These days angioplasty or the placing of stents to widen and support archeries in the human body is almost considered a routine procedure, yet the technology behind it is exacting and subject to rigorous quality and performance control. Not only are the stents themselves as devices and the wire used in their construction tested for tensile, compression and stiffness properties so too are the catheters used to deliver the stent into the body through the small incision in the groin. In particular the frictional properties of the hydrophilic coating of the catheters outer surface must be qualified, know and controlled. At Tinius Olsen we have developed a system which accurately measures and plots the frictional forces developed between catheter and a known surface finish applied at a given and controlled “Pinch” force. The pinch force and defined surface finish provide the known parameters test after test, thus any variation in the friction measured is derived from variation in the catheter surface.
The test is a cyclic test with the catheter being subjected to the pinch force again and again, and as shown in the clip Click Here the test is conducted within a saline environment, the solution being at body temperature.
The output from the Tinius Olsen system includes specific results; Friction force, time and position of the catheter as its cycles through the test process as well as graphs giving a graphical representation of the catheters performance. It is these results and graphs which qualify the quality and capability of a catheters surface coating.
Tinius Olsen systems can be configured to test the mechanical quality and performance of a wide range of medical devices subjecting them to tensile, compression, bending, shear, torsional, impact and hardness tests.