Medical devices play a critical role in healthcare, helping to diagnose, treat, and monitor various medical conditions. From surgical instruments to implantable devices, medical devices come in various shapes and sizes and are often made of different materials. One material that has gained popularity in recent years for medical device packaging is plastic. In this paper, we will discuss the plastic used for medical device packaging, its benefits, and what to consider when choosing the right plastic for your medical device packaging needs.
Types of Plastic Used for Medical Device Packaging
There are several types of plastic used for medical device packaging, each with its unique properties and benefits. The most common types of plastic used for medical device packaging are:
- Polypropylene (PP): PP is a popular plastic used for medical device packaging. It is a highly durable material that is resistant to impact, moisture, and chemicals. PP is also an excellent barrier to moisture, making it ideal for packaging medical devices that require a sterile environment.
- Polyethylene terephthalate (PET): PET is a clear and lightweight plastic that is commonly used for medical device packaging. It is highly resistant to impact and moisture, making it ideal for protecting medical devices during shipping and storage. PET also offers excellent clarity for visual assurance.
- Hi Impact Polystyrene (HIPS): HIPS is a highly versatile polymer that has excellent thermoforming capabilities making it a good choice with a deep draw package is required. HIPS may also have additional impact modifiers for extra durability.
- Poly Vinyl Chloride (PVC): PVC or vinyl as it’s often referred to as, has exceptional dimensional stability and very good clarity. Vinyl films may have UV inhibitors added for extra protection against external light and may also be colored with blue tint for added protection.
- Polyethylene terephthalate glycol (PETg): PETg medical grade extruded copolyester has excellent clarity and thermoformability. It can come with a denesting silicone coating which provides an enhanced user experience.
Benefits and Drawbacks of Plastic Medical Device Packaging
There are several benefits to using plastic for medical device packaging, including:
- Durability: Plastic is highly durable and can protect medical devices from environmental factors such as moisture, impact, and chemicals.
- Cost-effective: Plastic is a cost-effective material that can be easily processed, reducing the overall cost of medical device packaging.
- Versatility: Plastic can be formed into various shapes and sizes, making it ideal for packaging medical devices of different shapes and sizes.
- Barrier properties: Plastic can provide an effective barrier against environmental factors such as oxygen and moisture, helping to maintain a sterile environment for medical devices.
Choosing the Right Plastic for Medical Device Packaging
When choosing the right plastic for medical device packaging, it is important to consider the specific needs of your medical device. Some factors to consider include:
- Sterilization requirements: Some plastics are better than others with the ability to withstand certain sterilization processes, so it is important to choose a plastic that can withstand the sterilization method used for your medical device.
- Environmental factors: Consider the environmental factors that your medical device will be exposed to during shipping and storage, such as moisture, impact, and temperature.
- Cost: Consider the overall cost of the plastic and the processing required to form it into the desired shape and size.
Plastic is a versatile material that is commonly used for medical device packaging. It remains a cost-effective and durable material that can protect medical devices from environmental factors. When choosing the right plastic for medical device packaging, it is important to consider the specific needs of your medical device and choose a plastic that can withstand sterilization processes and environmental factors while remaining cost-effective. kp can help in this regard by utilizing its i.center services located in Charlottesville, VA.
Download to find out more.