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Catheter sheath with longitudinal seam

Image Number 2 for United States Patent #4921479.

An improved removable expandable sheath for aiding in the introduction of catheters into the body which is fabricated from a semi-stiff plastic with memory formed in a tubular configuration with a longitudinal slit or non-joined seam extending along the entire length of the sheath and where the tubular structure with slit is coiled about its longitudinal axis so that its tubular wall overlaps itself in its native state. On exertion of an internal force directed outward, the tubular sheath enlarges its effective diameter by uncoiling to the extent necessary to accommodate a catheter inserted therein. The memory inherent in the material of the sheath keeps the wall of the sheath snugly around the catheter to afford guidance of the catheter into a blood vessel.

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