What is OP-TEK® Flex Comfort? It’s an EVA material for flexible inner liners with an additive to decrease friction against the patient. This material does not have silicone in it; however, our additive is an FDA compliant, hypo-allergic additive that decreases the surface friction of the material. Now the advantages of that are it’s not silicone.
What happens is when silicone is compounded into the material it acts like a lubricant when the material heats up. So what happens is those molecules of the material as its at forming temperature really can move around a lot easier. That’s why when you’re fabricating materials with silicone as an additive you get a really a kind of taffy-like feel and it keeps draping and draping and drooping to the floor so that when you get it on your mold sometimes you can get some really inconsistent wall thicknesses.
So with the OP-TEK® Flex Comfort you do not have silicone so you do not get that drooping effect so you get much more consistent wall thicknesses. Another advantage of not having silicone in the material is that it does not cold flow. That is another big drawback with materials that have silicone in it is because of the lubricant they cold flow a little bit over time and under consistent load so you have to re-trim a flexible inner socket or it may extrude over the top of the rim of the carbon frame or the polypropylene frame if that is what you’re using.
Another great advantage of the OP-TEK® Flex Comfort is that we haven’t had anybody come back to us after having the material on the market over two years with any kind of issues with discoloration.
So it’s really a great material that provides you a nice lubricious surface or lower friction surface that aides in the patient donning and doffing of the inner liner.