Wednesday, 25 March 2015
Berkeley, UCSF researchers develop smart bandage to prevent and monitor bedsores
Engineers at the University of California at Berkeley and UC San Francisco have created a smart bandage to detect and assess tissue damage from pressure ulcers before it can be seen by human eyes. This early detection could make recovery easier and more possible; the technology could also be used to monitor an existing bedsore.
The technology uses electrical currents to monitor the changes that occur when a healthy cell starts to die. The bandage has been tested on the skin of rats and found to accurately detect varying degrees of tissue damage in a consistent manner across multiple animals.
The research team set out to create a type of bandage that could detect bedsores as they are forming, before the damage reaches the surface of the skin. "By the time you see signs of a bedsore on the surface of the skin, it's usually too late," Dr. Michael Harrison, a professor of surgery at UCSF and a co-investigator of the study, said in a statement. "This bandage could provide an easy early-warning system that would allow intervention before the injury is permanent. If you can detect bedsores early on, the solution is easy. Just take the pressure off."
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Written by Tim Ellis