Medical Advancements For Polyurethane Film Wound Care

In the last 20 years, an explosion of scientific advancements has been made in the field of wound care.  An entirely new type of medical professionals has emerged specializing solely on the treatment of wounds.

In the past physicians had just a basic array of wound dressings and packing to work with when treating large or non-healing wounds.  Today however the wound clinician now has an arsenal of dressings, biological tissue replacements, gene therapy, cell-based treatment options, and mechanically assisted therapy such as negative pressure wound therapy.

The materials used in the treatment of wounds have also advanced.

Many of the treatments listed above still incorporate a type of dressing or covering to protect the wound site.  One of these types of dressing is Polyurethane films.  In this post, we will be focusing on Mactac's VISODERM Polyurethane film products for Negative Pressure Wound (NPW) Therapy.

NPW Therapy is a technique involving a sealed wound site connected to a vacuum which applies suction to the wound site promoting healing by removing exudate, bringing fresh blood to the site, and applying optimal mechanical strain.  The wound is filled with a porous material, typically a PU sponge foam and covered with a PU film.

First used on non-healing chronic wounds, now it is used on large wounds and wound which have heavy exudate.

Mactac's VISODERM products are a line of polyurethane films.

Polyurethane is the film of choice for long term wound care or heavy exuding wounds.  Why?

  • PU films are monolithic (occlusive), which prevents bacteria and viruses from contacting the wound.
  • High MVTR - although the films are monolithic, they allow for the passage of water vapor through the film.  This keeps the skin from masticating (waterlogged) and allows for longer wear times.
  • These films are very stretchy and conformable improving the patients comfort while allowing for better adhesion to the skin adding to the wartime of the product.
  • PU films used are very thin at 1.0 mil, yet extremely durable.
  • This help with comfort and conformability but offers good abrasion resistance and toughness.
  • PU films offer excellent clarity which gives the practitioner the ability to view the wound without removing the dressing and exposing it to a non-sterile environment.

What sets VISODERM apart from other PU adhesive films?

  • Uses our non-VOC, non-migratory, ultra-low outgassing UV acrylic adhesives.  These adhesives are not solvent cast and are the cleanest adhesives available on the market.
  • High MVTR - our UV adhesives offer incredible MVTR, and when combined with our 1.0 mil PU film offer MVTR rates in 1300g/m/24-hour range with no film swelling.
  • UV efficiently - Price pressures are starting to hit the medical word as major GPO demand lower prices and cheap often inferior products from overseas hit our shores.  With UV we can coat cleaner higher performing adhesives at 8-10x the speed of current solvent-based systems.  This means the highest performing products at a competitive price.

Given how thin and conformable PU films are they need to have a disposable casting sheet for them to be processed and applied by the caregiver.  Although VISODERM comes both with a paper and polyethylene casting sheets, the products used in Negative Pressure Wound Therapy (NPW) have a clear Polyethylene casting sheet.  This is because these dressings tend to be wider and require support across the entire length where paper casting sheets are better suited for window or frame type dressings.  The PE casting sheet used in Visoderm is water clear for an unobstructed view of the wound site and fully printable by a variety of methods.

Mactac offers a 1.0 mil film to use as the wound cover and a 3.0 mil film which is commonly used in the construction of these devices around the flange.