The US has created a hydrogel patch for monitoring chronic wounds and point of delivery of antibiotics such damage.
American researchers have developed a bandage that can independently monitor the status of chronic wounds at the right time to treat them with medicines. A prototype of the patch was tested on bacterial cultures. Description of the development published in the journal Small.
Chronic wounds are considered to be skin lesions that cannot be healed within the expected deadlines. Their healing can wait a few years, and some of these defects don’t pass at all. Such wounds appear for various reasons: due to inflammatory processes, constant pressure on the skin (bedsores), or the development of necrosis. They also occur in certain diseases, including diabetes.
The authors of the new technology created a device that analyzes a number of important indicators of the condition of the wound. “Smart” patch contains a temperature sensor to measure the difference between the temperature of the wound and the skin around: a significant difference may indicate inflammation. Another element is that a pH meter, which analyzes the pH value of the damage (pH normally healing wounds rarely rises above 6.5). The third component identifies the degree of blood oxygen saturation. Data from all sensors, processes the microprocessor. If measurements show that the inflammatory process in the wound increased, the patch begins to heat up, releasing a shot of medication such as antibiotics.
The thickness of plaster does not exceed three millimeters. Scientists estimate that the device will be affordable — most of their cheap components, with the exception of microprocessors, but they can be reused. Today technology is at the prototype stage, it has already experienced the culture of keratinocytes (the main cells of the epidermis of human skin) containing Staphylococcus aureus: these bacteria often interfere with the healing of chronic wounds. In the future, scientists plan to conduct testing with people with various chronic wounds.