In recent years, carbon fiber medical devices have worked their way into the medical industry. Carbon fiber reinforced polymers (CFRPs) first made a name for themselves in aerospace and car technology. Now, the medical world has seized on its value.
The reason for this is straightforward. Carbon fiber materials help make medical devices last for longer durations. In many fields, carbon fiber seems to be a better option than traditional metals.
Because of its lightweight and durable strength, carbon fiber avoids many trappings metals can cause. In this article, we’ll examine how carbon fiber makes these devices last longer.
How Carbon Fiber Medical Devices Benefit Surgical Implants
One of the crucial ways that carbon fiber benefits the world is through its use in surgical implants. Researches note several advantages of carbon fiber medical devices for surgery patients.
First, the thermoplastic composites demonstrate the potential to improve healing in trauma procedures. This asset helps patients to recover more quickly and return to their everyday lives faster.
Carbon fiber also features noticeable radiolucency. This feature allows surgeons an unobstructed view of the fracture site during and after surgery. This radiolucency offers carbon fiber plastics an advantage over traditional metals. These metals often obstruct a physician’s view of the fracture site.
Other Manufacturers Use Carbon Fiber Plastics
Many other medical devices currently utilize carbon fiber-reinforced materials in their designs. One example of these products is wheelchairs.
The lighter weight, increased flexibility, and enduring strength of carbon fiber make it an ideal reinforcement for wheelchairs. With this material, people can lift and transport wheelchairs with greater ease. Their lightweight status also allows users to save strength when pushing them.
Many other medical devices aim to utilize carbon fiber reinforcements in upcoming models. Carbon fiber also shows promise for prosthetic limbs, for example.
Metal has yielded functional results in prosthetics for many years. However, it would seem carbon fiber may soon take over the industry. As mentioned before, this material boasts a lighter weight than its metal counterparts.
This lightweight doesn’t compromise functionality though. The material remains durable, even if the material offers increased flexibility. In doing so, it offers more practical advantages.
Don’t Be Afraid of Medical Device Classes
If you examine carbon fiber medical devices, you may notice the classifications with the device. The most common classes are class 1 medical devices and class 2 medical devices.
Class 1 medical devices feature a “low to moderate” risk factor. An example of such a device would be band-aids or stethoscopes. Class 2 medical devices feature a “moderate to high” risk factor. These include such devices as wheelchairs or even pregnancy tests.
As such, if you see a class 1 or 2 classification for a carbon fiber product, don’t worry. It’s most likely a safe device.
Discover More About Carbon Fiber Today
As you can see, carbon fiber provides a host of benefits to the medical field. This material can help shape the future of medical technology and medical devices in many ways.
We at SMI Composites know firsthand the advantages that these polymers bring. So, to learn more about carbon fiber, check out the ways we utilize it today!