August 20, 2020
Ultrasonic cleaning represents an ideal solution for many medical applications because ultrasonic cleaners deliver rapid and complete cleaning without the use of hazardous chemicals. Medical implants, surgical instruments and other medical devices can be cleaned in an ultrasonic bath of plain water or with a disinfecting solution. Even devices with complex shapes, interior cavities or cracks and ridges can be cleaned completely wherever the cleaning solution can penetrate.
For medical devices that are made of soft or fragile materials or that may have parts with delicate structures, the best cleaning performance can be obtained with medical ultrasonic cleaners that deliver gentle cleaning at higher frequencies. Low frequencies produce a powerful cleaning action that can result in pitting of soft surfaces or damage to fragile components. Within the higher frequency range that is appropriate for such medical device cleaning, it is still possible to match the devices to be cleaned with the specific high frequency that will deliver the best performance for the particular application.
High Frequency Ultrasonic Systems Can Clean Quickly Without Damaging Medical Devices
Ultrasonic systems generate microscopic bubbles in the cleaning solution. When these bubbles burst, they produce energetic jets that dislodge contaminants from the surfaces of the medical devices. Higher frequencies produce smaller bubbles and less energetic jets. Many medical devices are fragile or have delicate surfaces or structures that could be damaged by powerful mechanical cleaning. High-frequency ultrasonic cleaners deliver gentle cleaning action suitable for such medical devices.
Medical cleaning applications that require these higher frequencies and gentler cleaning action include the following:
• Medical implants made of soft synthetic material. Such implants may still have contamination from the manufacturing process and they have to be cleaned before being sterilized and used. Low ultrasonic frequencies can cause pitting on the material surfaces and can eat away thin layers. High-frequency ultrasonic cleaning removes the contaminants without affecting the soft implant surfaces.
• Medical implants made of hard plastic or other resistant material may have coatings, plating or smooth surface finishes that can be affected by cleaning with low ultrasonic frequencies. High-frequency ultrasonic cleaning can remove contamination while leaving the delicate surface finish intact.
• Medical instruments that are inserted into the body of a patient to take samples, view tissues or place stents or similar devices have to be cleaned before and after use. The instruments are fragile and have complex shapes, often with small structures that are easily damaged. High-frequency medical ultrasonic cleaners deliver the gentle but thorough cleaning required for these delicate applications.
• Medical instruments that take readings of patient conditions often can’t be sterilized with heat because their circuitry and materials are heat-sensitive. High-frequency ultrasonic cleaners can clean such instruments in a solution of disinfectant, sterilizing and cleaning at the same time.
An experienced manufacturer of medical ultrasonic cleaners can advise which system and frequency are the most appropriate for a medical cleaning application. Depending on the medical device material, surface hardness, structural details and nature of the contaminants, high-frequency ultrasonic cleaning is often an excellent solution.
Kaijo Can Help With High-Frequency Ultrasonic Cleaning of Medical Devices
Kaijo offers free consultation for ultrasonic cleaning applications and can custom-build systems to meet exact customer requirements. The company’s extensive experience with ultrasonic cleaning technology means that it can find solutions to difficult cleaning tasks while also offering standard systems for common applications.
Kaijo works closely with customers in the medical field and can propose ultrasonic cleaning systems to meet the special cleaning requirements for medical devices. Kaijo’s high-frequency systems combine rapid and complete cleaning with gentle cleaning action that avoids damaging medical devices and instruments.