Experimental tests of a fiber-reinforced cellophane membrane for hemodialysis

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IN coil and plate types of artificial kidneys, the present use of cellophane tubing for dialysis presents several problems. Cellophane is made from degenerated cellulose which is a highly fragile material. It must be handled or arranged with extreme caution. Consequently, in the assembling and operating of plate and of coil types of artificial kidneys, the problems of leakage and weak points are a constant hazard.

More specificially, in the coil type of artificial kidney the weak cellophane membrane tubing has a tendency to expand into the pores of the spacer, resulting in an inconstant priming volume, loss of dialysis surface, greater thickness of blood channel, and results in variation in rates of urea clearance. Furthermore, the possibility of lowering coil resistance, by using wider tubing and therefore larger cross-sectional area, is limited in the case of cellophane. Wider cellophane tubes can be made only at the cost of increased membrane thickness and therefore reduced mass transfer.

In order to solve the problems associated with the use of cellophane it is necessary to improve the physical properties of the membrane but at the same time not to decrease the mass transfer characteristics. This report presents the evaluation of a fiber-reinforced cellophane membrane. The membrane was tested for physical strength and urea clearance to discover whether or not a fibrous reinforcement could solve the problem of membrane weakness without impairing mass transfer.

Material and Methods

Membrane. The membrane used in this study was a cellophane membrane supported by a fibrous matting . . .



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