smart_bandage

The drugs are often administered to patients with wounds as a precautionary measure to prevent a bacterial infection from developing. However, not all patients will need antibiotics and the problem for doctors is identifying which ones are susceptible to infection. Moreover, the growing threat of antibiotic resistance because of unnecessary prescribing is also a great matter of concern.

A 'smart' medical dressing developed by scientists at the University of Bath that changes colour when it detects infection will improve treatments for burns patients and help combat the global problem of antibiotic resistance by reducing the unnecessary use of antibiotics.

University of Bath biophysical chemistry professor Toby Jenkins and his team have developed what can be called as one of the most practical and needed inventions of year 2015 - a "smart-bandage". Yes, you read it right. A smart bandage is smart in the sense that it will be able to serve as an early warning indicator of an infection so that one can take care of it before the disease escalates. It does so by turning a wildly bright green when it senses any bacteria.



The smart bandage's insides has a gel like material that further has miniscule dye-filled capsules which get punctured when they come into contact with toxins produced by bacteria, which ultimately results in making the bandage emit a neon green colour.

Smart bandages can prove to be of great use for young infants/children. In fact professor Jenkins derived his inspiration after seeing a small child at a burn unit who had accidentally poured boiling water all over herself. According to him, "Knowing that because there was no rapid way to diagnose the infection and that she could die the next day as a result was highly motivational."

"What we really want to do is send the patient home but the big worry is that maybe there is an infection so the current advice is that you tell the parent to check the temperature every few hours," Jenkins told a business daily. "But temperature is not a great guide for infection. So you would use this in addition, in part to give parental reassurance that things are OK."

After Smartphones, smart cars and Smart TV, Smart bandages was a much needed invention.

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