MEDICAL NONWOVEN TAPES
Medical tape is used for a variety of reasons in a healthcare setting, such as securing dressings, wound care products or medical devices, like catheters, to a patient. Medical tapes are made from different materials, and have varied levels of adhesive backings, depending on the tape’s purpose. Wound care tape is generally moisture proof, and it may contain a zinc oxide adhesive. General-use tape offers less adhesion for easier tape removal.
Nonwoven materials are increasingly popular in medical applications because they are:
- Soft and stretchable
- Liquid repellent or liquid absorbent
Often made from polymers, medical nonwovens are used in the following broad categories:
- Personal healthcare/hygienic products, such as bedding, surgical gowns, masks, wipes;
- Non-implantable medical dressings, including wound care products, dressings, surgical drapes, and bandages.
Typical wound care products can include:
- Antimicrobial dressings
- Hydrocolloid dressings
- Hydrogel sheet dressings
- IV conformable film dressings
- Multi-layer island dressings
- MVTR dressings
- Suture strips, wound closure strips
- Post-surgical orthopedic wound care dressings
Nonwovens are used in medical applications for surgical gowns and masks, wound care supplies, wound care dressings, and surgical drapes. They can be made of natural materials like cotton, or man-made materials such as polyester, polypropylene, polyimide, rayon, and polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE). Nonwovens can be sterilized, treated with anti-microbial agents, are soft and stretchable, and can either repel or absorb liquids, including wound exudate.
Most nonwovens used in medical applications are spunlaced, spunlaced and meltblown, or spunbond. They are suitable for many protective applications and can be treated to prevent water, blood, or bacteria from seeping through the fabric. Chemical performance enhancement can improve properties for moisture transport, flame retardancy, and abrasion resistance.
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