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Concept Group's Shaped Vacuum Protects Patients During Cryosurgery

Mon, 01/30/2012 - 5:59am
WEST BERLIN, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Surgeons have long known that extreme cold temperature can destroy tumors and other unhealthy tissue. Ideally, such cold would be delivered by cryosurgical probe, to avoid the need for major invasive surgery. But how could surgeons maneuver a -321°F probe to the tumor site without freezing healthy tissue on the way in? Wrapping enough thermal insulation around the probe to protect the patient would make the device too thick to be inserted.

Well, now there is a real solution. A new kind of thermal insulator.

Aarne Reid, President and CEO of Concept Group, explains. "The conventional approach was to put a barrier of insulating material between the cold probe and the healthy tissue. We do just the opposite. We take everything out of the barrier, leaving an extremely deep vacuum. It is an amazingly powerful thermal insulator ? far more powerful than any material insulator."

The insulating vacuum layer wrapping the probe is called an Insulon® Shaped-Vacuum™ Thermal Barrier. "We call it a Shaped-Vacuum™ barrier because it can be manufactured in almost any shape, and in small sizes, too," said Reid. "The thermal insulation is perfectly effective even when the vacuum gap is thinner than the width of a human hair."

For the cryosurgical probe, Concept Group enclosed the device in an Insulon barrier only one quarter of a millimeter thick. The probe carries liquid nitrogen at -321°F, cold enough to instantly turn unprotected tissue to solid ice. Yet it can be held comfortably in ones bare hand.

"We are very pleased to have a role in making cryoablation possible," said Reid. "It has been so gratifying, knowing that our Insulon technology is helping to save patients lives."

Concept Group, Inc.(www.conceptgroupinc.com; 800-424-7325) is an AS9100C-certified developer and manufacturer of advanced technology hermetic seals, vacuum-insulated products, and precision assemblies. Its products can be found in the skies on commercial and military aircraft, in spacecraft circling the globe, in the human body during cryoablation surgery, and even deep underground in oil/gas exploration.

Posted by Sean Fenske, Editor-in-Chief, MDT

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