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These clips are used in place of stitches to hold together or block off something medical, like a blood vessel. I think that, because they are tantalum, they are meant to be used in cases where they are left in the body permanently. I would guess, though I don't know for sure, that ones meant to be used externally and temporarily would not be made of such an expensive metal. As with everything medical, the regular price of these things is probably astronomical: I would not be surprised if the normal price per single clip is as much as the $10 I paid for a dozen packs on eBay.
Source: eBay seller shauna74
Contributor: Theodore Gray
Acquired: 29 January, 2004
Sample Group: Body Parts