Laser Marking in Medical Technology

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Marking medical technology with a laser marker

Marking medical technology with a laser is very important as it can be used to ensure the traceability of medical and surgical instruments (e.g. instruments for operations), as well as hearing aids, pacemakers, dental drills, titanium bone screws, technical ceramics and implants. Shape, size (e.g. micro-inscriptions, data matrix codes, etc.) and content may vary. The results are produced by changing the colour of the material and ensure the corrosion-free inscription of the medical instrument. Laser cutting is a technique that is also frequently used for stents or medical textiles, e.g. orthopaedic inserts.

UDI (Unique Device Identification) Laser Marking

The manufacturer’s information must be traceable permanently and at any time for medical instruments and implants. There is a verification system based on ISO-compliant standard codes for this purpose; the so-called UDI (Unique Device Identification) system. This multi-digit code must be located on medical instruments. Scanning it will provide information about the manufacturer, the expiry date or an item reference. This is the only way to ensure error-free documentation, which is hugely important for the safety of patients and doctors.

A JustLaser Laser Marker for marking medical instruments and implants guarantees sterility for the marking and permanent traceability. The result is also extremely resistant to cleaning agents, disinfectants, bodily fluids and acids. Medical devices remain clean and sterile throughout the entire marking process. There are no alterations or damage to the surface structure when marking medical technology with a laser. This is very important when marking implants, which ultimately remain in a patient’s body for years: no unwanted or harmful substances may come away as a result of laser marking.

Which materials are suitable for laser marking?

Medical instruments or implants can be manufactured from a diverse range of materials. It is possible to use a laser to mark medical technology made from a variety of materials:

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Applications of laser marking in medical technology

When it comes to medical technology, laser marking is considered standard for marking a wide variety of instruments. Depending on the requirements, laser marking medical technology can be used to record a variety of information: UDI (Unique Device Identification) and MDR (Medical Device Regulation) contain production data, serial or batch numbers, product and manufacturer information and unique labels to protect against forgery. As laser inscriptions are resistant to bodily fluids, cleaning agents, disinfectants and acids, they have become indispensable in the medical sector. The markings are also sterile and, thanks to the fact that they do not alter the surface, there is no area for germs to build up. Another advantage is the optimal biocompatibility: implants marked with a laser can remain in the human body without any problems for a long time without any materials coming away from the inscription.

Depending on the material, you can use a JustLaser Laser Marker to mark the following products in a sterile and durable way: implants, medical and surgical instruments, plastic cannulas, orthopaedic implants, pacemakers, dental drills, titanium bone screws, technical ceramic, surgical tools, and many more. The robustness of the markings is even ensured with frequent use and frequent cleaning. Laser markings guarantee the important data can be read electronically for the long-term. This is the only way to ensure a product can be traced for its entire lifespan.

Benefits of laser marking in medical technology

The list of benefits of laser marking in medical technology is a long one. Not least because of this, laser marking is considered the standard procedure for this industry:

  • Simple integration into existing processes: thanks to intelligent software solutions, different inscriptions can also be produced quickly and easily and integrated into existing production lines. The data is taken from existing ERP systems, and dynamic content is reproduced in codes.
  • Versatile: with a JustLaser Laser Marker, you can mark nearly any material used in medical technology – from ceramics and plastic to high-alloy steel, titanium and stainless steel.
  • No tool changing necessary: you don’t need to change tools or retool, even when making a variety of markings with dynamic content. The material doesn’t need to be clamped or fixed in place, thus enabling distortion-free cutting.
  • Long-term traceability guaranteed: The demands on marking are particularly high in the medical sector: the laser marker does well here as the inscriptions remain even when cleaned with very aggressive chemicals and are also heat-resistant and abrasion-resistant. In view of this, there are generally no sensible alternative technologies to laser marking.
  • Precision and optimal readability: even the smallest details and font sizes can be produced precisely through laser marking.
  • Optimal economic efficiency: quick production – even for serial numbers or codes – ensure high levels of efficiency. It isn’t necessary to change tools or retool for different inscriptions. As a result, there are no set-up times or tool wear, which enables optimal cost control.

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