This ‘futuristic wound dressing’ seems pretty smart

2 Dec 2015

Irish and Dutch researchers put their thinking caps on recently to try to make the healing of wounds an easier, more comfortable process. The result? Smart dressing for futuristic wound care applications.

DermaTrax is the name of the smart dressing and it works, well, exactly how you expect a smart dressing to work.

Smart = sensors. Smart dressing = dressing packed with sensors. DermaTrax, so, can do all the things you expect of a sensor-filled plaster to do.

It can monitor conditions in a patient’s wound, including its temperature, moisture and pH. It can check on both the condition of the wound and the dressing itself, relaying information to a nurses’ station via a wireless link.

Think about it, an infection can be noticed without having to remove bandages or plasters, and changing dressings is a precise, finicky task that no party enjoys.

According to the makers, the miniature sensor module will be flexible and thin enough to fit inside a typical dressing without affecting the patient’s comfort.

Tyndall National Institute, Fleming Medical and the Netherlands-based Holst Centre are behind – with H2020 backing – the new smart dressing, with health-related projects garnering a particular focus at Tyndall of late.

Dr Paul Galvin, head of ICT for health at Tyndall, noted that his group anticipates involvement in medical projects worth over €10m by 2018.

“This smart dressing product will not only result in a significant addition to Fleming Medical’s product portfolio – it will also increase Ireland’s standing as an international hub for medical device research and development,” said Galvin.

Smart dressing DermaTrax

Mark Fleming, CEO of Fleming Medical and Dr Paul Galvin, head of ICT for health at Tyndall National, with a giant, hopefully not-to-scale sensor for the DermaTrax, via Claire Keugh

Gordon Hunt was a journalist with Silicon Republic