How to Choose the Right Magnet for Your Medical Application

November 9, 2022

How to Choose the Right Magnet for Your Medical Application


Magnets play an integral role in many types of medical devices. However, for medical device manufacturers to truly integrate magnets into their application, special consideration must be awarded to the type of magnets chosen.


In this article, Dexter Magnetic Technologies aims to shed some light on this topic and help medical device manufacturers be prepared to navigate the magnet industry with ease.


Medical Magnet Applications & Technologies


Magnets play a more integral role in medical devices than first meets the eye. Permanent magnets are often leveraged to attach various device components and even help prevent the device from accumulating debris. 


Magnets are also helpful to improve the safety of a device when they act as emergency shut-offs. And sometimes, magnets can be the core technology that makes a medical device work in the first place.


The use of magnets in medical devices is broad. Thanks to the growth of the custom magnet industry, manufacturers can now get a customized magnetic solution that aims to support their application’s purpose and specific needs, leading to some groundbreaking innovations in the medical industry.


Below, let us consider some of the most prominent applications for magnets in the field of medical devices:


Magnets for Implantable Medical Devices

Implantable Magnet Applications


Magnets can be used as implantable applications either to support a device’s function, power it, or be the core technology of what makes the device work. Perhaps the most well-known example in this sense is the pacemaker, which is often implanted together with a magnet whose role is to “reprogram” into asynchronous mode. 


Other examples can include:


  • Artificial Heart
  • Blood Pump
  • Cochlear
  • Dental Implants
  • Implantable Drug pump
  • Endoscopy
  • GERD Device
  • Glaucoma Valve
  • Hearing Implant


For more information on implantable magnet applications, please visit this page.


Medical Magnetic Technologies for Implantable Applications


Magnetic technologies can be custom designed to support a medical application and add additional features or fail-safes to it. Some examples include:


  • Magnetic Sensing
  • Magnetic Couplings
  • Motor Rotors
  • Voice Coil Motors
  • Wireless Charging and Data
  • Magnetic Location


Medical Magnets for Surgical Applications


Magnetic technologies have also been widely used in surgical contexts, and their prevalence is increasing as more and more innovative solutions are introduced into the field.


For more information on how magnets can be leveraged for surgical purposes, we encourage you to consult our surgical section here


Surgical Magnet Applications


Using magnets in surgical applications has made room for much improvement when it comes to many procedures. For instance, in traditional laparoscopic surgery, surgeons utilize their tools through tubes inserted through small incisions. 


Thanks to magnets which can be used as surgical assists, the need for incisions is virtually removed. The surgeon can utilize a magnet to manipulate the tool.


Magnets can be used in various surgical applications, such as:


  • Catheter guidance – magnetic steering
  • Magnets in ventilator motors (VCM and Rotary)
  • Magnetic catheters
  • Magnetic torque limiters
  • Magnetic couplings in surgical robots
  • Magnetic grippers


Medical Magnetic Technologies for Surgical Applications


Magnetic technologies can offer medical devices much support and even make the entire design more efficient. Some commonly insured technologies can include:


  • Magnetic Sensing
  • Magnetic Couplings
  • Retrieval Magnets
  • Hermetic Sealing


Magnetics for Biomagnetic Separators And Resuspension Mixing


Biomagnetic separators and resuspension mixing pave the way for the creation of many biotech, life science, and pharmaceutical applications:


  • DNA separation and mRNA purification
  • Cell isolation and rare cell detection
  • Development of immunoassays
  • Capture of biomolecules
  • Protein purification


We provide a patented Dexter LifeSep® biomagnetic separator that has assisted many clients in creating effective and quality tools for these industries.


Permanent Magnets for Cell Separation


Magnetic cell separation is a key component for many medical applications. As the premier provider of permanent magnets, we routinely assist our clients in making the right choices for cell separation technologies, pacemakers, proton therapy, lasers, and many other class 1, 11, and 111 medical solutions. 


Magnet Materials for Medical Applications


The most common type of magnet used in medical applications is called “the neodymium magnet”, made from 3 key materials:

  • Neodymium
  • Iron
  • Boron


Neodymium magnets can come with different magnetic field strengths, providing manufacturers with much versatility when it comes to designing their products.


Precision Biocompatible Magnetic Coatings for Medical Devices


Biocompatible coatings have been proven to drastically improve the usability of a medical device that leverages magnetic technologies. The coating provides more stability, tolerance, and even resistance to absorption.


By far, one of the most optimal biocompatible coatings in this sense is Parylene thanks to its chemical stability, thermal endurance, and high tensile strength. 


FDA Compliance


It’s important to note that apart from choosing the appropriate magnet for a medical device, FDA considerations must also be at the forefront of the design process. 


Working with a medical magnet supplier who can assist companies in navigating FDA requirements and streamlining the approval process is essential for product manufacturing optimization. 


How to Be Confident You’ve Chosen The Right Magnetic Solution for your Medical Device, Surgical, or Other Medical Application


The field of medical magnets is ever-growing as new technologies are entering the mainstream. For medical device manufacturers, this means many more opportunities to leverage medical magnets effectively.


But for their efforts to render results, it’s important to work with the right partner who can assist you in navigating this field and help you access the right magnetic technology or product for your application.


Dexter provides such support and can assist your company in accessing and even designing the custom magnet you need.


For more information about our services and technologies, contact us online.


The Dexter Difference


At Dexter, we provide manufacturers with high-end magnetic end-to-end solutions and technical support to help them launch effective and minimally invasive devices.


Our staff can assist with:


  • Design and Development
  • Machining & Precision Components
  • Finished Device Assembly
  • Testing and Verification


Among many others.


For more information, we encourage you to contact us online.