Why can't medical non-woven fabrics be reused?
1. Loss of sterile barrier function after use
According to research, the shelf life of sterile items is closely related to the thickness of non-woven fabrics and the number of layers of wrapping cloth. Disposable non-woven packaging materials, after a series of high-temperature steam sterilization and chemical scrubbing, their fiber structure is deformed, the holes are sparse, the thickness is reduced, and even small holes that are not easily detected by the naked eye, the bacteria resistance rate will drop suddenly or Loss of antibacterial function. The requirements for packaging materials in the 'Technical Specifications for Disinfection' are: in the storage process, provide a bacterial barrier and maintain a sterile state. If the disposable packaging material is used repeatedly to package the device, the storage after sterilization cannot reach the safe expiration date.
The raw materials of medical non-woven fabrics are polyester and viscose fibers, which are chemical fibers, and polyester is a synthetic fiber in chemical fibers. It is made of monomers extracted from petroleum through polymerization. Adhesive fiber is a man-made fiber in chemical fiber, which belongs to regenerated cellulose fiber. It is made of natural wood, reed, cotton linters and other cellulose as raw materials and is chemically processed. It is divided into filament and short fiber. Filament is also called rayon or viscose; short fiber has cotton type (also called rayon), wool type (called artificial wool) and medium and long fibers.
2. The internal microscopic function changes after sterilization
Medical non-woven packaging materials are generally SMS composite non-woven fabrics. The main material of this type of non-woven fabric is polypropylene, which is processed through multiple processes through meltblown and spunbond processes. The microstructure is fine plastic fibers (see the figure below), and it is the characteristic of plastic articles that it shortens when exposed to high temperature. , There is no real high temperature resistant plastic, and high temperature resistance is also a relative concept, so the non-woven fabric will have a corresponding shortening reaction on the microscopic level.
After high temperature sterilization, the fine plastic fibers of the non-woven fabric will be shortened to a certain extent, and the performance is that the non-woven fabric after sterilization is more brittle and flexible than before sterilization. has declined. The change of non-woven packaging materials is one of the reasons why non-woven fabrics can only be used once.
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