The development of medical-grade plastic polymers has opened up a whole new world of possibilities for medical devices. With mechanical properties that rival those of metal and additional benefits such as biocompatibility, engineered thermoplastics are often able to completely replace metal in medical device designs. Proto-Cast offers expert medical device injection molding backed by ISO 9001-2015 certifications.
Top 5 Benefits of Medical Device Injection Molding with Engineered Thermoplastics
- Greater design possibilities – With medical device injection molding, designers can create parts that would be impossible to machine from metal. Injection molding can also consolidate parts into a single unit, eliminating the need for costly, multi-step assembly.
- Sterilization – Engineered thermoplastics remain stable under high heat, allowing them to be easily sterilized in an autoclave. Plastic injection molding can also greatly reduce the cost of a part, allowing for disposable devices and instruments instead. This can reduce device prep time and risk of infection.
- Reduced device weight – Engineered thermoplastics offer great tensile strength at low weight. They are now the go-to choice for hip, knee, and even spine replacements. They are also used to create lightweight prosthetics, which improve comfort and use for the wearer while offering greater durability. PEEK is the most commonly used thermoplastic for these applications, as its unique biocompatibility means it will be accepted by the body and not break down over time.
- MRI and x-ray compatibility – MRI machines operate by producing strong magnetic fields. The magnetic property of metals interfere with the function of the machine, creating inaccurate imaging and potential discomfort or injury in patients. Likewise, x-rays cannot easily penetrate metal, which appear extremely bright on the film and make it hard to visualize the bone underneath. In contrast, engineered thermoplastics are compatible with both MRI and x-ray technology.
- Improved functional aesthetics – Color coded medical devices are a great asset to hospitals when speed is a factor. Medical-grade engineered thermoplastics can be dyed to meet desired specifications, allowing for easy identification. Others offer great transparency (such as Polycarbonate resins) and can create surgical instruments that give surgeons improved visibility during procedures.
Proto-Cast: Engineered Thermoplastics Experts
Whether you are looking to replace a metal medical device with a plastic one, or you wish to combine the benefits of both, the experts at Proto-Cast are ready to assist you. From choosing the perfect polymer to producing the complex geometries of your design, we ensure your product meets all of your specifications. Call us today at 610-326-1723 to learn more.