A luminous bandage will tell you if there is an infection in the wound: there is no need to remove it Person

A luminous bandage will tell you if there is an infection in the wound: there is no need to remove it

The new material, which is currently being finalized at RMIT University, includes magnesium hydroxide nanolists that are embedded in the nanofibers of a standard cotton bandage. After application to a wound (especially a chronic one, for example from a diabetic ulcer), biocompatible magnesium hydroxide facilitates the healing process by killing harmful bacteria and reducing inflammation.

If the infection is still started in the wound surface, its environment will change from slightly acidic, like healthy skin, to more alkaline. This change in pH, in turn, will lead to bright fluorescence of magnesium hydroxide under the influence of ultraviolet light.

As a result, doctors can check for infections by simply shining ultraviolet light on the patient's bandage without removing it. Similarly, if it was already known that the wound was infected, UV light may indicate that the infection has disappeared if magnesium hydroxide has stopped glowing.

According to the project's lead scientist, Dr. Wee Khan Truong, the manufacturing process of such a material can be easily expanded for commercial production, plus it can be up to 20 times cheaper than other antibacterial dressings containing more expensive silver nanoparticles. In addition, he states that although existing antimicrobial wound dressings begin to lose their effect of killing bacteria after a few days, laboratory tests have shown that magnesium hydroxide dressings remain effective for up to seven days.

The study is described in an article published in the journal ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces.