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63205.  Sat Apr 01, 2006 3:30 am Reply with quote


Who has drip-dry veins?




Someone who has had a 'Dacron graft' – an artificial tube used in heart surgery made from Crimplene or Terylene.

Ironically (or perhaps non-iron-ically), the material is made from carbon, oxygen and hydrogen – the same ingredients as cholesterol.


Dacron is the US name for the artificial fabric invented in Britain in 1941, better known in the UK as Crimplene or Terylene and in Germany as Trevira. Hailed as a wonder fabric, it was advertised as 'drip-dry' or 'non-iron'.

Dacron grafts were developed in 1953 by the eminent American surgeon Michael DeBakey using his wife's sewing machine. His other claim to fame is that he invented M.A.S.H – the Mobile Army Surgical Hospital used in Korea and Vietnam.

Two people who might have drip-dry veins are Boris Yeltsin and Jerry Lewis, both of whom owe their lives to Dr DeBakey. He performed double heart bypass surgery on Jerry Lewis in 1982 and quintuple bypass on Boris Yeltsin in 1996.

A movie called Crimplene (1996) is not about Boris Yetsin but two Crimplene sofa cushions interrupted by a Crimplene angel who reveals ‘a world of possiblities’. Neither Jerry Lewis nor Alan Alda are in it.

Dacron is chemically inert so is easily tolerated by the body. Grafts come in either woven or knitted form. The woven sort has smaller pores and doesn’t leak as much blood. According to one source, DuPont no longer sells Dacron for medical uses – the company has been sued too often.

Other uses for Dacron include: plastic bottles, wallpaper, nappies, aquarium nets, bras for the fuller figure, bow strings for archery, mountaineering ropes, fishing line, gliders, inflatables for land, air and sea, soft tops for convertibles such as Porsche and Alfa Romeo, tyres, upholstery and Barbie dolls.

Virtually all magnetic recording tape is based on Dacron.

Dacron is used to make both sails and rigging for sailing boats. It is sun proof, UV resistant and long-lasting even in the harshest conditions. Its other advantage is the silky feel of the fibre. However, it is expensive and available only in white.


Michael Ellis DeBakey was born to Lebanese Christian immigrants in 1908, the same year as Bette Davis and Valentine Dyall. By the time he went to high school he had read the entire set of Encyclopaedia Britannica. He has published more than 1,300 articles and books on medical subjects (including several best sellers) and served as advisor to almost every US President in the last 50 years. In the early 1960s, President Johnson offered him the job of Secretary of State for Health, Education and Welfare, but he declined. He has performed more than 60,000 cardiovascular operations. He has twice saved the life of Jerry Lewis – once from an ulcer in 1978 and once with double bypass heart surgery in 1982. In 1939, DeBakey was one of the first people to identify the link between smoking and lung cancer. On May 28th 1965 he was the front cover of Time Magazine. In 1964, he performed the first heart-bypass operation. In 1966, he was the first to successfully transplant a partially artificial heart. In 1969, he received the highest civilian honour the US can bestow – the Presidential Medal of Freedom with Distinction. President Boris Yeltsin called DeBakey "a magician of the heart" after his operation in 1996. DeBakey is an honorary member of the Royal Society, His motto is “Strive for nothing less than excellence”.



Technical details:

Dacron, Terylene, Crimplene and Trevira are often just called ‘polyester’, short for polyethylene terephthalate or further abbreviated to PET.

It was developed and patented as Terylene by John Rex Whinfield (1901-66) and JT Dickinson working for ICI in 1941. DuPont purchased the US rights in 1945. By 1953, DuPont chemical engineers had worked out how to do it themselves and patented their ‘Fiber V’ under the new name Dacron.

A racehorse called Crimplene won the Irish 1,000 Guineas in 2000 and went on to win the Coronation Stakes at Ascot, the Vodafone Nassau Stakes at Goodwood and the German 1,000 Guineas.


Could link neatly to Deep-vein thrombosis


s: ATK
s: kdn
s: wik
s: IMDb


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