Why are plastic injection molding solutions used for the US medical industry?
- Control and Reliability
- Stringent Standards and Processes
- Efficient Production of High Volumes
- Ideal for Enclosures
- Provides Versatility for Medical Products
Hospitals, laboratories, clinics, and medical colleges around the world use numerous plastic products every day. This material can be found in medical appliances, tools, and equipment — the applications are nearly limitless. But as with everything else in the medical industry, these products need to meet a certain standard to fit the job.
These demanding requirements have led to plastic injection molding solutions in the US medical industry growing in popularity for the past decade. Read on to see what these qualities are, and why this fabrication solution has become widely used in the industry.
Control and Reliability
This control and reliability are extremely useful when it comes to manufacturing medical devices. Most tools and equipment used by the medical field are extremely sensitive and have to meet exact specifications to operate under unique stressors. For this reason, these devices have to be engineered with their end-use in mind from the start of the manufacturing process.
The method of injection molding itself is almost a hundred years old, and in that time it has been continuously refined to the point where it has become one of the best fabrication methods in the world. In combination with new digital technology, there is now modeling software available to help automate most of the tool design process. This software helps to create the best possible die for any job. All these advancements have made it so that the process of plastic injection molding is controllable and reliable.
Stringent Standards and Processes
When using plastic injection molding to create medical instruments and parts, numerous standards must be met. The manufacturing operation is put under significant scrutiny by the FDA, which looks out for any issues regarding the material, process, and mechanical performance of the produced parts. Each device in the plastic injection molding process has to pass its examination to be cleared for use.
Additionally, injection molding manufacturers need to be certified to ISO 13485 standards in order to produce any medical devices. This means that every plastic injection molding company hired by the medical industry in the US can guarantee that they are knowledgeable about the standards and regulations. This ensures compliance and expertise in producing any kind of medical equipment.
Knowing that these plastic injection molding solutions are headed by those with the necessary experience and know-how gives the medical industry some peace of mind when having new plastic devices manufactured. They are reassured that each component will be designed, engineered, and manufactured to meet the most stringent standards and processes.
Efficient Production of High Volumes
As with all molding processes, plastic injection molding uses a die and molding tool to make any component. Once the die and tool are designed to meet any specifications of the medical device, the same implements can be made to make thousands upon thousands of the same medical parts.
The plastic injection molding process is very robust and repeatable and can ensure a consistent product run so long as the die and tools are maintained properly. Unlike metal materials, plastic is more pliable and won’t quickly wear down the die. This means that production can run month after month without much issue.
Large production volumes are possible and can be executed by the same machines quickly and economically. This process can easily make plastic items such as containers, tubes, and syringes with ease — in fact, injection molding is perfect for making any generic plastic items that are used in the US medical industry.
Ideal for Enclosures
Plastic molding is especially suited to making plastic enclosures commonly used in the medical industry. While there are other methods capable of making the same enclosures, other production methods have several drawbacks — they tend to be slower, consume more material, and cost more in the long run. The benefits of sticking with injection molding make it the best choice.
Enclosures used in the medical field come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Some of them are large plastic housings made for delicate medical equipment. Others are simpler, such as tool holding trays or pill dispensers. As plastic is lightweight but durable, it makes it a cheap but effective material for the job. On top of that, plastic does not interfere with electromagnetic energy (such as those used in CAT scans or x-rays), nor is it affected by radiation.
Provides Versatility for Medical Products
With the use of dies, plastic injection molding is an extremely versatile process that can create complex design features with high precision. In the molding process, plastic is injected into a cavity and against the die, which allows it to take complicated shapes with ease.
Aside from the process, the plastic resins — such as polyethylene, polypropylene, and polystyrene — themselves offer much versatility. Depending on the resin being used, there will be different mechanical and chemical properties that can meet a specific end-use. These resins can be biocompatible, chemical resistant, heat-stable, and have other properties that make them useful for a wide range of medical applications.
The exacting requirements of manufacturing medical supplies make it a difficult operation to supply needed parts. However, with the use of plastic injection molding solutions, the US medical industry has been able to create and implement numerous plastic products into their operations. These plastic components can be found in a wide range of medical appliances, tools, and equipment due to the many benefits produced by the plastic molding injection process.
This process is only possible with the expertise and services of excellent injection molding companies like Richfields. If you are seeking high-quality and prompt injection molding services, contact us today!