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Variable Data Print Labels: Tailoring Information for Diverse Medical Devices

The medical device industry has unique requirements when it comes to product labeling. With a wide variety of devices, each having specific regulatory and information needs, manufacturers need labeling that can be customized for each item. To achieve this, they turn to Variable Data Print (VDP) labeling technology.

VDP technology enables manufacturers to create custom medical labeling at the item level. This can include serial numbers for traceability solutions, barcodes, expiration dates, and customized operating instructions. The versatility of VDP technology allows manufacturers to print personalized labeling for healthcare devices while meeting compliance regulations.

Challenges in Medical Device Labeling

Medical device manufacturers have a variety of challenges they must be overcome:

  • Regulatory compliance: Medical devices must adhere to stringent labeling regulations that vary across global markets.
  • Diverse information: With a vast array of medical devices for different clinical applications, each device has specific informational requirements on its label.
  • Traceability and safety: It is crucial to track and trace medical devices throughout supply chains to enable recalls and monitor adverse events.
  • Personalization: Implantable and customized devices require patient-specific data like implant dates, surgeon details, procedure information, and patient ID.
  • Label durability: Medical device labels must withstand rigorous clinical environments including sterilization, storage, and continuous use.

With such complex — and diverse — requirements, traditional label printing methods are expensive and inefficient. Variable data printing applications allow for customized down to the medical device level for proper labeling.

Advantages of Variable Data Print Labels for Medical Devices

Benefits of variable data printing applications for medical devices include:

  • Flexibility: VDP allows printing variable data on-demand for each device label, providing flexibility to tailor labels to specific products without pre-printing and stocking pre-defined label SKUs.
  • Traceability: Unique serial numbers, product IDs, lot/batch numbers, and other traceability codes can be digitally printed on each VDP label, improving traceability and quality control.
  • Compliance: Regulatory-compliant medical labels can be adjusted quickly as regulations change without wasting pre-printed stock.
  • Patient Safety: VDP allows patient-specific data to be printed on labels for implanted devices. This provides precise device-patient linkage to improve safety monitoring and identification in case of adverse events.
  • Counterfeit protection: Custom identification helps prove product authenticity to reduce counterfeiting.

Navigating Regulatory Compliance with VDP Labels

From the FDA and EU MDR to CMDR and country-specific requirements, staying compliant is complex, but essential for market access. This is where the agility of variable data print labels proves invaluable.

With VDP technology, manufacturers can design label templates that integrate all mandatory regulatory elements, while keeping critical data digitally variable. VDP allows just-in-time printing of compliant labels as devices are manufactured and shipped.

VDP: The Versatility and Agility You Need

As medical devices continue to advance, so do their labeling requirements. Traditional pre-printed labels can no longer address the industry's needs for compliance, traceability, and personalization across diverse products. Variable data print technology provides the versatility and agility needed in today's complex regulatory environments.

Tapecon's VDP solutions can meet the diverse information needs of various medical devices, ensuring regulatory compliance, enhancing traceability, and facilitating personalized patient care.


With over 100 years of manufacturing experience, Tapecon works with product teams to solve challenges, create products, and enhance lives. Learn more about our durable printing and coating services.


LET'S CONNECT Contact Tapecon for questions related to application engineering, printing, converting, and assembly processes for medical, electronic, and industrial applications.  

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