Nitinol shape memory alloys (SMAs) are attracting considerable attention as core materials for medical guidewires because of their excellent flexibility and shape retention. However, since Nitinol guidewires possess low rigidity, the pushability and torquability of the guidewires are insufficient. On the other hand, although guidewires made of stainless steel have high pushability, plastic deformation occurs easily. We have developed a new class of superelastic guidewires with functionally graded properties from the tip to the end by using new SMA core materials such as Cu-Al-Mn-based or Ni-free Ti-Mo-Sn SMAs. The tip portion of the guidewire shows excellent superelasticity (SE), while the body portion possesses high rigidity. These functionally graded characteristics can be realized by microstructural control. These guidewires with functionally graded properties show excellent pushability and torquability and are considerably easier to handle than conventional guidewires with Nitinol or stainless steel cores. Moreover, a metallic catheter using a Ni-free Ti-based SMA with high biocompatibility is introduced.
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Minimally Invasive Therapy and Allied Technologies|
|Publication status||Published - Aug 2006|
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