Plastic is a polymer which is of extensive use in every field with inventions taking place every now and then. Being omnipresent, it finds many applications in the field of medical science also. It has made healthcare simpler, affordable and has also made many new techniques possible. It has saved many lives by reducing contaminations and infections. Some of the most significant applications have been in Unblocking blood vessels, Prosthesis, Artificial corneas, Hearing aids and Plastics pill capsules. Today, many of the most innovate and complex medical procedures depend on plastics. It has also brought a revolution in health care at home by creating medical devices which are simple, portable and effective. Grades of Plastics like Polycarbonates (PC) and Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) plastic used in medical science have to comply with both ISO 10993-1 and USP Class VI standards.

Plastic can be easily sterilized which makes it an ideal choice for most surgical instruments. Even the sterilization containers themselves are made of plastic. They help to make many devices to be re-used over a long period due to effective sterilization. Plastic packaging is most appropriate for medical applications due to its barrier properties and being light weight, durable, transparent, low cost and compatible with most materials. Combination of PC (Polycarbonate) and ABS plastic is used in sterile packaging and disposable syringes, the use of which has drastically brought down the rate of staph infection to almost nil. From large machinery to something as simple as surgical gloves and Petri dishes, plastics have served the healthcare for all kinds of needs. Artificial knees and hips which are also made of plastics have improved the quality of life for many older people and the ones who have met with some kind of accident. This has enabled free movement and pain-less joints for them.

People who with impaired or lost hearing have all thanks to say to the plastic hearing implants, which has brought back their hearing power. Not only hearing, even those with impaired vision can have transplants. Artificial corneas which are highly transparent and flexible with properties similar to a natural cornea can be implanted to restore vision again. Apart from the sophisticated medical instruments, Polycarbonate (PC) plastic also finds its application in something as simple and common as eye glasses. It has a natural UV filter and is tough enough to protect your child’s vision without the danger of cracking.
ABS plastic is used in medicine for blood access.

Even though plastic has always been associated with lot of criticism due to its non-biodegradable nature but if the appropriate grades of plastic are used they can be very easily recycled to save the overall resources and energy. It is an element which is now part of our lives and due to the immense benefits associated with in our daily life as well as advanced fields like medical science, it is irreplaceable.

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