A new ‘smart bandage’ has been developed that uses electrical currents to detect early tissue damage from pressure ulcers, or bedsores, before they can be seen by human eyes — and while recovery is still possible.
So this is pretty exciting! Researchers are developing a bandage that can sense damage to tissue under the skin before an ulcer forms. The article in the link above discusses the applicability to reduce the incidence of pressure ulcer formation by detecting early signs of tissue breakdown before the wound even forms! This could have significant impacts on the reduction of pressure ulcers, especially within the hospital setting. It turns out that when tissue is healthy it reduces the amount of electricity able to pass through the skin. When it becomes damaged, such as due to extended pressure in one area, it increases electrical conductivity and allows more electrical current to pass through the skin. This new dressing measures changes in this current to determine if there is an increased likelihood of developing a pressure ulcer. This would be a significant tool in the fight to reduce pressure related wounds. There is a lot of new “smart” technology being released lately, and it will be interesting to see how new technologies become integrated into the care and prevention of wounds.