Adhesive bandage strips recognized by kids everywhere are well known for protecting cuts and scrapes from the elements. With roots in homemade fabrics and gauzes, innovations in plastics helped adhesive bandages—and later liquid bandages—become staples in medicine cabinets and first-aid kits around the world.  Find out more.

MRI Scanners

When you think of helium, it’s usually tied to images of floating balloons and funny, squeaky voices, but there are many much more serious uses for helium. Helium is essential for MRI machines to function and for NASA to launch rockets. It’s also used in particle accelerators, leak detection, deep-sea diving, and airbags in our car. It is indispensable to many industries.

MRI Scanners, or magnetic resonance imaging, is a medical technique used in radiology to visualize detailed internal structures, allowing doctors to see what's going on inside your body!  These scanners rely on cryogenic liquids to enable superconducting capabilities of the electromatnetic coils within. Liquid
helium is the most commonly used cryogen in MRI and is a byproduct of natural gas!Learn more about how MRI scanners work and how helium, a natural gas byproduct, helps saves lives every day!

Similar to MRIs and medical sonograms, seismic and other geophysical surveys provide high-definition images of subsurface geology. Read more about seismic here.

Blood Pressure Monitors

The squeeze bulb is usually rubber or neoprene, as are the connecting hoses. The band or cuff, is basically a fabric-covered neoprene bladder with Velcro fastener. The bladder is enclosed in a nylon or synthetic fiber fabric, which reduces patient discomfort. The band must be very flexible and durable to accommodate the infinite differences in patients and situations. Oil and gas products make all of this possible.

Awaken your Assumptions about the Value of Oil and Gas.

Cochlear Implant

To be safely implanted into patients, a silicone encasement, made with oil and natural gas by-products, is used to cover sensitive electronics in these amazing hearing devices. The use of silicone keeps moisture out of the system and its smooth pliable surface makes it comfortable and safe for the patient to wear. Read more at

Did you know that you can stay healthy and warm during the winter thanks to the wonderful world of petrochemicals?

Via Energy is Everything

The first question my mother (a former nurse) asks me each fall is “have you gotten your flu shot?” Some flu vaccines are being created in bio-process containers made of plastics created by petrochemical-based materials such as polyethylene (made from the petrochemical ethylene) as a starting material. Their use is to grow cell cultures in controlled environments which then yield the proteins that are the basis for new drug therapies as well as the more common flu vaccines. Also, the flu shot will likely be administered using syringes made from polypropylene (made from the petrochemical propylene) or polyvinyl chloride aka PVC (which is created from the ethylene as a building block.)

Read more here.

Energy is Everything Discusses what you might see on your next doctor's visit.

A stethoscope dangles from a hook on the door of the examination room, and a fire engine-red box with a slotted lid for discarded sharp objects is on the counter. There’s also a little stack of pointy black caps for the scope used to check ears. All come from petroleum. There’s ethylene in the stethoscope’s polyvinyl chloride tubing. The sharps box is plastic, made from ethylene and propylene. Petroleum also is in antiseptics, aspirin and antibiotics – here and in millions of Americans’ medicine cabinets. Chemicals from petroleum are used to make the coating for time-release pills and others that won’t irritate the stomach. Without medical equipment and supplies made from oil and natural gas, our health care would look and feel very different.

Read More

Oil & Gas in Your Hospital via Energy Tomorrow

America’s healthcare system is second to none, and energy plays an important role in keeping it that way – properly caring for the 35 million people who stay in hospitals each year and the additional 125 million who annually use other healthcare services.

Keeping U.S. energy abundant and available to run the world’s leading healthcare sector requires the right leadership and the right policies – to access energy reserves and to foster safe, efficient energy development. Through their 2016 vote Americans can help ensure the country’s energy security. Our health depends on it.

includes sensors and computers which allow them to measure and monitor the heart every step of the way, with alarm systems if something goes wrong or needs adjusting.

The tubing that allows the warm blood and nutrients to flow into the heart is made from oil and gas products. The plastic casings that keep the heart safe and protected and the computers that help monitor the heart during transport are made from plastics and other petroleum-based products as well.

This new process is replacing the previous method of storing a heart on ice in a cooler (also an oil and gas product) and is allowing hearts to be viable for much longer than the previous 6 hours allowed for transport before the ice would begin to damage the heart. This new technology will be a game-changer and a life-saver to many. These amazing innovations are made possible by oil and gas

Fueling U.S. Forward

  • Domestic oil and natural gas are integral to modern medicine—from powering large hospitals to forming the building blocks of life-saving medical technologies.
  • Hospitals need reliable energy around the clock to keep their machines running. For this reason, many large U.S. hospitals generate their own emergency backup electricity from diesel fuel.
  • Fossil fuels support vital hospital operations, such as powering neonatal intensive care units. The power needed to keep a premature baby’s incubator running is literally life or death. Advances in medical technology made possible by reliable energy have increased U.S. infant survival rates by 78% since 1960.
  • Domestic oil and natural gas are used for much more than electricity. These energy sources are also used in medicines, including aspirin, and in medical technologies, including prosthetic limbs.
  • Plastic, which comes from natural gas, is used to make numerous medical products: pacemakers, stents, syringes, heart valves, prosthetics, artificial corneas, hearing aids, pill capsules and many more.

​When our children fall ill, one overwhelming impulse takes over: we want answers, and we want to make it all better. When a child’s health is on the line, modern medicine provides a wide array of tools and solutions.

Doctors, nurses, and parents perform the hard work of keeping our children safe and healthy, but seeing kids through to a healthy adulthood requires more than effort. It requires energy—the kind of abundant, affordable energy that is powered by domestic oil and natural gas. It’s easy to take this accessible, reliable energy for granted, but our health system would look very different without it. 

More about Oil & Gas in Medicine via Fueling US Forward.

Did you know?

Most pain relievers have a coating derived from petroleum that protects the stomach from irritation. Other hydrocarbon-based byproducts are found in everything from antibiotics to antihistamines. Read More

Amazing innovations have been made in the world of heart transplants. Doctors are now able to keep hearts beating and warm for longer periods of time during transplant, keeping them healthier and more viable for the surgery. Tubes connect to the ventricles, pumping warm blood and nutrients into the heart to allow it to keep beating. This system also  

Heart Health Innovation

Plastic Makes it Possible discusses five amazing innovations in plastic changing heart health, including the plastic patch, dissolving stent, boxes for donated hearts, 3-D printing and inflatable implants. Find out more on their website.

Oil and Gas products are making it possible for transplant hearts to keep beating during transportation!

Energy is Everything talks about the role of Oil and Gas products in the health field.

Beyond the energy powering MRIs and CAT scans, ambulances and emergency helicopters, and hospitals themselves (the nation’s largest 3,040 hospitals use more than 5 percent of the energy consumed by the entire commercial sector, despite only accounting for 2 percent of commercial floor space), petroleum-based products abound in the health care sector. From ethylene in the tubing of the stethoscope to the plastic of the IV bag to the polypropylene filtering layer in surgical masks, so many materials vital to keeping us healthy are derived from oil. Chemicals derived from petroleum also serve as the building blocks for Aspirin, antibiotics and other indispensable medicines and their packaging.

Read more about these everyday products at Energy is Everything!

Your Medicine

Oil and gas play an important role in bringing your medicine to you. Some pills like aspirin have petroleum products in them or coating them. The containers your pharmacy uses to send these pills to you are also made of plastic. Every day, people depend on medications to keep them alive and well, and oil and gas make that possible.

API's Energy is Everything Campaign


Energy FYI: The nation’s largest 3,040 hospitals use more than 5 percent of the energy consumed by the entire U.S. commercial sector. Each year there are about 37 million calls for emergency medical help, most involving one of the country’s 81,000 emergency vehicles. Betadine, the brownish antiseptic that’s common in emergency rooms, includes a synthetic polymer made of chemicals derived from petroleum.

​Read more.

Other Medical Items from oil and gas:




Artificial Corneas


Dentures & Hearing Aids

Denture Adhesive


Disposable Syringes



Heart Valves

Petroleum Jelly (Vaseline)

Photographic film for XRays


Rubbing Alcohol


Vitamin Capsules

Artificial heart valves consist of an orifice, through which blood flows, and a mechanism that closes and opens the orifice. There are two types of artificial heart valves: mechanical devices made from synthetic materials and biological or tissue valves made from animal or human tissue. The sewing cuff, used to attach the valve to the heart, is made out of double velour polyester - courtesy of oil and gas.

Angioplasty Balloon

An angioplasty balloon is a medical device that is inserted into a clogged artery and inflated to clear blockage to allow blood to flow. With extensive use in the United States since 1980, it can relieve angina (chest pain) and prevent heart attacks in people with coronary artery disease. Angioplasty is less invasive than bypass surgery, as the balloon is fed in through the blood vessels, and the chest remains closed. Patient recovery time is also generally faster with angioplasty than with bypass surgery.

The key requirements of angioplasty balloons are strength and flexibility. The materials typically used in the twenty-first century are polyethylene terephthalate (PET) or nylon. Read more about the role oil and gas plays in creating these life-saving devices here.