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Pressure-Sensitive Adhesives

Originally Published March 2000


Pressure-Sensitive Adhesives

Converting services

Offering custom die-cutting, spooling, printing, rapid prototyping, and zone and multilayer adhesive laminating services, an FDA-registered and ISO 9002–certified converter handles PSAs for the medical device industry. The company, which is equipped with a cleanroom, specializes in medical and diagnostic adhesives, including tapes, films, foams, wovens, nonwovens, hydrocolloids, hydrogels, and systems with active ingredients. Suitable applications include surgical procedure kits, surgical drapes, diagnostic devices and subassemblies, and patient-monitoring, wound-care, ostomy, and transdermal systems. M&C Specialties Co., 90 James Way, Southampton, PA 18966.

PSA-coated breathable film

Designed as an alternative to polyurethane foams and films, a PSA-coated breathable film is available in white and flesh colors. The manufacturer has a line of medical-grade PSA-coated products, including woven, nonwoven, film, foam, and custom carriers. Various PSAs are available for use with the films. Applications include bandages, electrode attachments, surgical drapes, and transdermal patches. Tyco Adhesives, 1400 Providence Hwy., Norwood, MA 02062.

In vitro diagnostic tapes

Two PSAs are manufactured in card form, a format suited for smaller or semiautomated production runs of diagnostic testing products. ARcare 8565, a firm tape product, has a membrane that can be laminated, as well as a 10-mil white PET carrier with a 2-mil clear liner. ARcare 7815 has a flexible and clear 2-mil PET carrier that facilitates sample flow to the membrane while protecting the indication area. Adhesives Research Inc., P.O. Box 100, Glen Rock, PA 17327.

Pressure-sensitive foam tapes

Intended for use with medical devices such as electrodes and grounding pads, pressure-sensitive foam tapes incorporate soft, closed-cell polyethylene foam with a thickness of either 1/16 or 1/32 in. Bioflex tapes are designed to conform to body contours and to repel liquids such as sweat and water. The tapes, which are coated on one side with a nonsensitizing acrylic adhesive, provide good adhesion to skin. They are also covered with a heavy lay-flat release liner to facilitate die-cutting operations. Scapa Tapes North America, 111 Great Pond Dr., Windsor, CT 06095.

Adhesive systems

A company supplies adhesive systems used in die-cut parts for medical device OEMs. Diagnostic test strips and transdermal and skin-sensitive patches are among suitable applications for the adhesives. The FDA-registered, ISO 9002–certified company also offers die-cutting, kiss cutting, narrow-width slitting, turnkey assembly, and multilayer lamination services. Materials are supplied in rolls, sheets, or pads to suit specific application and manufacturing requirements. Pacific Die Cut Industries, 3399 Arden Rd., Hayward, CA 94545.

Lamination of adhesives

A company laminates standard and medical-grade adhesives to a variety of materials, including polyethylene and polypropylene foams and films, silicone rubber, vinyl, polyester, and nonwoven fabrics. The company can provide custom engineering services and has a Class 1000 cleanroom and a low-level-humidity room for special production requirements. G & L Precision Die Cutting, 1766 Junction Ave., San Jose, CA 95112-1018.

Adhesive hydrogels

Skin-compatible adhesive hydrogels are made of natural-based and synthetic polymers with varying degrees of electrical conductivity and skin adhesion. The hydrogels are custom built to meet customer specifications and are offered on a variety of release liners. Potential applications include muscle stimulation devices, electrosurgical grounding and TENS pads, iontophoretic return and diagnostic electrodes, and external pacing and defibrillation electrodes. LecTec Corp., 10701 Red Circle Dr., Minnetonka, MN 55343.

Pressure-sensitive products

A manufacturer produces supported and unsupported PSAs for medical device OEMs. Among the products produced are foams, films, nonwovens, hydrogels, rolls, narrow-width products, zone-coated products, extended liners, island placements, and products with simple die- and kiss cuts. Applications include suture mounts, drape securements, transdermal components, patient monitoring and positioning devices, and packaging inserts and gaskets. Madison Polymeric Engineering, 13 Beaver Rd., Branford, CT 06405.

Adhesive transfer tape

Suitable for use with ESD pads and EMI/RFI shields and gaskets, and for flexible circuit splicing and attachment, a 0.002-in.-thick conductive adhesive transfer tape is made of acrylic and comes with 0.0035-in.-thick treated silicone low-release paper. The tape has silver-plated conductive particles that conduct electricity isotropically through the adhesive. In addition, the tape requires no cure time, provides instant tack for immediate bonding, and offers quick stick and shear properties with low resistance. Tecknit, 129 Dermody St., Cranford, NJ 07016.

Detachable flag labels

Multipart polyolefin detachable flag labels provide one permanent and one removable label for tracking medication, patient facts, and other information. The labels can be manufactured in perfect register; the single label construction can support on-site printing of identification data, bar codes, patient codes, origination and expiration dates, and other variable information. Adhesive deadeners allow the flag labels to be removed and reapplied indefinitely. Topflight Corp., P.O. Box 2847, York, PA 17405-2847.

Custom PSA conversions

An ISO-certified and FDA-registered custom converter of adhesive-backed materials specializes in manufacturing disposable medical devices for skin contact. Capabilities include laminating, rotary die-cutting, slitting, and printing. Materials converted include films, nonwovens, foams, hydrogels, and paper liners. The company also manufactures suture strips, tube holders, and wound, hydrogel, and hydrocolloid dressings. TTL Medical, 10537 Lexington Dr., Knoxville, TN 37932-3212.

Adhesive converting services

In addition to laminating, slitting, and rotary and reciprocating die-cutting, a company offers rotary laser die-cutting for medical OEMs. This process cuts small holes at rotary speeds and kiss cuts and through cuts multiple levels of adhesive materials. The lack of hard tooling in the procedure allows users to run large sample sizes at a reduced cost, enabling companies to make prototypes of different design options. Tapemark Medical/Industrial Fabricating Div., 1685 Marthaler Ln., West St. Paul, MN 55118.

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