Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New bandages change color if infections arise

Date:
November 16, 2010
Source:
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft
Summary:
Wounds have to be regularly checked, to make sure any complications in the healing process are detected at an early stage. A new material will make it possible to check wounds without changing the dressing: If an infection arises, the material changes its color.

If the wound has become infected, the innovative dressing material indicates this by changing color: the yellow plaster turns purple.
Credit: Fraunhofer EMFT

Wounds have to be regularly checked, to make sure any complications in the healing process are detected at an early stage. A new material will make it possible to check wounds without changing the dressing: If an infection arises, the material changes its color.

Whether a small cut with a fruit knife, a surgical wound or a major injury caused by a fall -- the body's defense and repair system leaps into action and tries to close the wound as quickly as possible. Small injuries usually heal within a few days, but a gaping wound will take longer to heal, and an infection can take hold even after several days. Dressings protect the site of the injury but to check the wound they have to be removed. This can be painful for the patient and moreover it risks giving germs the chance to enter and cause infection. Scientists at the Fraunhofer Research Institution for Modular Solid State Technologies EMFT in Munich have developed dressing materials and plasters which indicate pathological changes in the skin. If an infection is present, the color of the dressing changes from yellow to purple.

"We have developed an indicator dye which reacts to different pH values, and we have integrated it into a dressing and a plaster. Healthy skin and healed wounds usually show a pH value of below 5. If this value increases, it is shifting from the acid to the alkaline range, which indicates complications in the healing of the wound. If the pH value is between 6.5 und 8.5 an infection is frequently present and the indicator color strip turns purple," states Dr. Sabine Trupp, scientist at the EMFT, explaining the chemical reaction. In this way the intelligent dressing material makes it possible to regularly check wounds from the outside without disrupting the healing process.

Production of the color control strip posed a number of challenges for the research scientists as it had to meet several different requirements: "The dye has to remain chemically stable when bonded to the fibers of the dressing material or the plaster to ensure that it does not get into the wound. At the same time, the indicator must show a clear change in color and also react sensitively in the right pH range," says Trupp. The experts succeeded in meeting all these requirements. A prototype of the dressing has already been produced and initial tests have proved successful. The researchers are now thinking about how to develop their innovation further. There are plans to integrate optical sensor modules into the dressing to measure the pH value and indicate the results on a reader unit. This method would allow the value to be read off precisely, providing information about how the wound is healing.

How do we go from here? The next step will be to use the dressing in a hospital environment at the University of Regensburg's dermatology clinic. Dr. med. Philipp Babilas will be medical supervisor to the project: "Our studies of the pH value in acute as well as in chronic wounds have shown that it plays a key role in wound healing." At present Dr. Trupp and her team are looking for an industrial partner to produce the dressing commercially.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. "New bandages change color if infections arise." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101116093821.htm>.
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. (2010, November 16). New bandages change color if infections arise. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101116093821.htm
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. "New bandages change color if infections arise." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101116093821.htm (accessed April 16, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) The ebola virus outbreak in West Africa is now linked to 121 deaths. Health officials fear the virus will continue to spread in urban areas. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cognitive Function: Is It All Downhill From Age 24?

Cognitive Function: Is It All Downhill From Age 24?

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) A new study out of Canada says cognitive motor performance begins deteriorating around age 24. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Mt. Everest Helped Scientists Research Diabetes

How Mt. Everest Helped Scientists Research Diabetes

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) British researchers were able to use Mount Everest's low altitudes to study insulin resistance. They hope to find ways to treat diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Carpenter's Injury Leads To Hundreds Of 3-D-Printed Hands

Carpenter's Injury Leads To Hundreds Of 3-D-Printed Hands

Newsy (Apr. 14, 2014) Richard van As lost all fingers on his right hand in a woodworking accident. Now, he's used the incident to create a prosthetic to help hundreds. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins