starlim//sterner

Healing wounds with silicone

An enormous advance in wound healing has been achieved through an innovative new silicone dressing, under which cold plasma stimulates microcirculation and reduces bacteria on the skin. The technology exploited in di_CAP® is a joint development of liquid silicone specialist starlim//sterner from Marchtrenk/AUT and its customer CINOGY GmbH from Duderstadt/D. CINOGY is regarded as the inventor of the PlasmaDerm® devices which generate an electrical field on the skin through high-frequency alternated current. These devices are already in everyday use in the clinical environment, due to their positive impact on wound healing.

The new technology is based on di_CAP® and employs a small silicone plate connected to a control unit the size of a matchbox. This generates plasma through ionisation of the layer of air between the dressing and the patient's body (which also acts as the opposite pole). This special application not only entailed selection of a silicone type which is biocompatible and, consequently, suitable and approved for direct contact with human tissue. The material solution also needed to have both electrically conductive and insulating properties. “Having defined the silicone component requirements in the joint project with CINOGY, we then undertook the upgrading of our machine technology”, explains Roland Schmutzhart, Project Manager at starlim//sterner. “We manufacture the silicone dressing on a new plant that can process two types of silicone simultaneously. This case involves an insulating and an electrically conductive type, both of which are, of course, approved for medical applications”. A perforated silicone dressing with a thickness of 4 mm and area of 100 cm² is produced. In combination with the plasma technology developed by CINOGY, this represents a revolutionary solution for all patients suffering from chronic wounds such as decubiti or diabetic foot syndrome. It can also be applied during preoperative, perioperative or postoperative care to prevent chronification and shorten hospital stays.  “We are continuously developing the technology and will, in the medium-term, be capable of providing other sizes and solutions for veterinary medicine and the cosmetic sector”, emphasised CINOGY CEO, Dr. Dirk Wandke.

Independent medical studies have already proved the effectiveness of plasma treatment in wound healing. The tissue-compatible plasma produced with gas temperatures at body temperature encourages microcirculation, thus stimulating wound healing. A well tolerated and painless procedure, it also effectively reduces bacteria without reducing levels of resistance, even in the case of problematic bacteria such as MRSA. The silicone dressing is ideal for this application, as it can be sterilised, does not adhere to the skin and, thanks to a highly transparent window, permits viewing of the wound and any suture present. This joint development impressively demonstrates the innovativeness of both companies.

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