The Secret to Long-Lasting Medical Implants: Hermetic Sealing

November 30, 2023

The Secret to Long-Lasting Medical Implants: Hermetic Sealing

Medical implants that incorporate magnets require specialized hermetic seals to ensure safety and longevity, but what exactly is hermetic sealing, and why is it so important? 

A hermetic seal creates a fully enclosed barrier that prevents the passage of gases, fluids, or particles. This protects sensitive internal components like magnets from corrosion when implanted inside the body. Without effective sealing, fluids seeping in can degrade implants over time. 

Sealing techniques must provide biocompatible barriers tailored for long-term reliability. Common methods include laser welding of titanium, thermocompression bonding of glass-to-metal, and specialty adhesive bonding. Rigorous leak detection using helium mass spectrometry ensures seal integrity is maintained. 

Thanks to advances in hermetic sealing, next-generation implants can incorporate miniaturized magnetic motors, couplings, sensors and wireless charging for precision drug delivery, neuromodulation, cardiac rhythm management, orthopedic, and gastro-intestinal application. 

But sealing implants isn’t without challenges. Techniques must adapt as implants shrink. Materials selection requires balancing durability, biocompatibility, and cost, and new sealants must undergo extensive safety testing to meet ISO and medical device standards.

Some visionary researchers see a future where every implant has an integrated sensor suite sealed by micro-scale hermetic membranes. This could enable real-time wellness monitoring and personalized medicine tailored to your body’s needs. We’re not there yet, but advances are accelerating. In the meantime, hermetic sealing remains an underappreciated hero enabling life-changing medical implants. 

 Head to our white paper titled “Hermetic Sealing of Magnets in Implantable Medical Devices” to learn more about this subject.