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The Design and Test Standards of Medical Surgical Masks

Author: Released in:2020-04-30 Click:645

Surgical masks are designed to keep operating rooms sterile, preventing germs from the mouth and nose of a wearer from contaminating a patient during surgery. Although they have seen a rise in popularity among consumers during outbreaks such as the coronavirus, surgical masks are not designed to filter out viruses, which are smaller than germs.

The Design and Test Standards of Medical Surgical Masks

The design of the surgical masks depends on the mode; usually the masks are 3 ply/3 layers. This 3 ply material is made up from a melt-blown material placed between  non-woven fabric. The melt-blown material acts as the filter that stops microbes from entering or exiting the mask. Most surgical masks feature pleats or folds.

Commonly, 3 pleats are used allowing the user to expand the mask so it covers the area from the nose to the chin. There are 3 different ways to secure the masks. The most popular is the ear loop, where a string like material is attached to the mask and placed behind the ears. The other is the tie-on and the head band. The tie-on straps consist of four non-woven straps that are tied behind the head. The head band is an elastic strap that is placed behind the head.

Test Standards for medical surgical masks:

ASTM F1494-14: Standard Terminology Relating To Protective Clothing ;

ASTM F1862-17: Standard Test Method For Resistance Of Medical Face Masks To Penetration By Synthetic Blood (Horizontal Projection Of Fixed Volume At A Known Velocity)

ASTM F2101-19: Standard Test Method For Evaluating The Bacterial Filtration Efficiency (BFE) Of Medical Face Mask Materials, Using A Biological Aerosol Of Staphylococcus Aureus;

ASTM F2299-03(2017): Standard Test Method For Determining The Initial Efficiency Of Materials Used In Medical Face Masks To Penetration By Particulates Using Latex Spheres ;

ANSI/ASQC Z1.4-1993: Sampling Procedures And Tables For Inspection By Attributes ;

ISO 2859-1:1999 – Sampling Procedures For Inspection By Attributes — Part 1: Sampling Schemes Indexed By Acceptance Quality Limit (AQL) For Lot-By-Lot Inspection ;

BS EN 14683:2019 – Medical Face Masks. Requirements And Test Methods (British Standard)

16 CFR Part 1610 – Standard for the Flammability of Clothing Textiles

1910.1030 – Occupational Exposure to Bloodborne Pathogens

42 CFR Part 84 Respiratory Protective Devices;

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