Pacemaker leads are thin, insulated wires that transmit electrical impulses from the pacemaker to the heart muscle to assist and support synchronized blood flow to the rest of the body. Usually, they are made from CoCrMo-based alloy wires insulated by a polymer.

Finding the right medical-wire component is an essential step for any medical device manufacturer, and for pacemakers leads there are certain features that OEMs must consider. Typically, pacemaker leads will need to offer high fatigue resistance, ultra-high-strength, toughness and excellent corrosion resistance, as well as having the conductive capabilities required to transmit electrical pulses safely.

Sandvik Materials Technology’s EXERA brand of medical wire components draws on the company’s long-standing expertise in metals and metal alloys, with more than 200 selections available as well as an extensive list of configurations, including coating, stripping and coiling. Sandvik works closely with customers to design and manufacture components perfectly calibrated for their application. Along with other wires for medical devices used to treat cardiovascular, endovascular and peripheral vascular disorders, Sandvik has provided insulated wires for use in pacemaker devices since the 1990’s when they were contacted by a pacemaker manufacturer who had heard about the company’s high quality coated wires.

For the metal material, Sandvik specification sheets recommend the EXERA® F562 solid and/or cored EXERA® medical wire components, which consists of joining EXERA® F562 CoCrNiMo alloy shell (MP35N) and a secondary alloy as the core material. Typically, the core material in Sandvik cored wire is pure silver, as this promotes increased conductivity relative to solid MP35N for increased battery life. The EXERA®F562 shell is highly biocompatible, corrosion and fatigue resistant, and the standard core dimension is 25% by area (other sizes are available upon request). For pacemaker lead polymer coating, Sandvik offers EXERA® Polyimide and PTFE coatings to standard NEMA or JIS builds, as well as ‘thin’ and ‘ultra-thin’ builds of insulations.

Other Sandvik products used for heart mapping devices, sensors and monitoring devices include  EXERA®12R10 HV medical wire and  EXERA® 316LVM medical wire.

For more information about EXERA® fine medical wire-components, including a full list of materials or to contact Sandvik about developing a medical field device, visit their website.