Methods and devices are provided for effecting movement of one or more components of a multifire device, such as a clip applier, hernia tacker, or skin stapler. In one exemplary embodiment, a surgical fastening instrument is provided having an elongate shaft with an end effector coupled thereto and adapted to apply one or more surgical fasteners to tissue. An electrically expandable and contractible actuator, such as an electroactive polymer actuator, can be used to drive a fastener advancing or forming assembly through the elongate shaft, thereby driving a surgical fastener into tissue. In another embodiment, an electrically expandable and contractible actuator, such as an electroactive polymer actuator, can be used to effect movement of an articulation joint formed between the elongate shaft and the end effector.

Title
Electroactive polymer-based articulation mechanism for multi-fire surgical fastening instrument
Application Number
11/162984
Publication Number
20060047305
Application Date
September 30, 2005
Publication Date
March 2, 2006
Inventor
Jeffrey S Swayze
(45011), Hamilton
OH, US
Joseph Charles Hueil
(45140), Loveland
OH, US
Frederick E Shelton
(45133), Hillsboro
OH, US
Mark S Ortiz
(45150), Milford
OH, US
Agent
Nutter Mcclennen & Fish
MA, US
Assignee
Ethicon Endo Surgery
OH, US
IPC
A61B 17/04
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