IoT-Solution: Bandages That Monitor and Tailor Wound Treatment

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IoT-Solution: Bandages That Monitor and Tailor Wound Treatment

Band-Aids and bandages have hardly evolved within the last decades. But now a team of engineers at Tufts University in Massachusetts has developed a IoT-Solution designed to actively monitor the condition of chronic wounds and deliver appropriate drug treatments – thereby improving the chances of healing. Chronic skin wounds that may result from burns or diabetes can overwhelm the regenerative capabilities of the skin. They often lead to persistent infections and, in serious cases, also to amputations. The new bandages contain heating elements and thermo responsive drug carriers that can deliver tailored treatments in response to measurement data from integrated pH and temperature sensors tracking infection and inflammation. A microprocessor reads the data from the sensors and can release drugs on demand from its carriers by heating a gel.

IoT-Solution: Bandages That Monitor and Tailor Wound Treatment

The entire construct is attached to a transparent medical tape to form a flexible bandage less than 3 mm thick. Smart bandages could provide real-time monitoring and delivery of treatment with limited intervention from patients or caregivers.

The smart bandage we created, with pH and temperature sensors and antibiotic drug delivery, is really a prototype for a wide range of possibilities,

said Sameer Sonkusale, PhD, professor of electrical and computer engineering at Tufts University’s School of Engineering.

One can imagine embedding other sensing components, drugs, and growth factors that treat different conditions in response to different healing markers.
The smart bandages have so far been tested successfully in the laboratory. Next are precilinical studies, so hopefully smart bandages will be available to patients within the next years.

Image Credit: Tufts University

 


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