Medical adhesives are mainly found in medical and surgical tapes, bandages, medication patches and various types of wound care products. A few no. of people also get allergic reaction with these medical adhesives and this is not owing to skin allergy with this adhesive. The reason behind this reaction is the non-allergic irritation triggered by chemicals present in the medical adhesive. And this condition is called irritant contact dermatitis which virtually appears similar to an allergic skin reaction and therefore the confusion created due to this is not surprising because it is very rare to have allergy with the medical adhesive.
Factors that are driving the market growth of medical tapes globally include expanding innovation, growing HAI (Healthcare Acquired Infections incidences, concern among clinicians about patient safety, extensions of product line from manufacturers and development of single patient use tapes. While growing incidences of burns, wounds and injuries as well as rising awareness among patients and physicians regarding the usage of medical tapes are few trends that are boosting the growth of medical tapes. Additionally, manufacturers of medical tapes are focusing on presenting differential products for increasing their market share through better safety and applications in the global market of medical tapes.
However, adapting various alternate methods of treatment, escalating incidences associated with skin injuries caused due to medical adhesives and lack of awareness related with proper selection as well as usage of medical tapes are predicted to hinder the market growth of medical tapes globally.
Skin Allergic & Irritant Contact Dermatitis
Contact dermatitis defines as a skin inflammation in the upper layers owing to direct contact of skin with the particular substance. And this contact dermatitis has two types namely irritant and allergic. Allergic contact dermatitis is due to irritation of substance that triggers immune reaction inside the body that itself states the contact of skin while in irritant contact dermatitis, there is no allergic reaction or direct irritation due to skin contact. For even a healthcare provider, it is very tough in determining whether the contact dermatitis is caused through bandage or medical adhesive is an irritant or allergic reaction. So, in order to determine the cause behind allergic reaction is, scientists conducted widespread allergy test on individuals who reported to have an allergic reaction with the bandages and medical adhesives.
The symptoms associated with irritant and allergic contact dermatitis have several similarities as well as differences. Even though the situations are nearly impossible to differentiate on the basis of symptoms alone. Typically, people having irritant reaction with the medical adhesives report soreness, stinging and even burning at the site of contact rather than itchiness. With the contact dermatitis of allergic type, reverse is true and pain is predominated by itchiness. But in both the cases, at the site of contact, skin turns pink to red and this redness might spread further. This area appears to be red rash similar to a small bumps and minor burn while blisters formation and break open causing infection risk in severe cases is also seen.
Removing bandage or tape is the first and foremost treatment for an irritant as well as allergic contact reaction with the medical adhesive. After that with the help of mild soap and water, gently cleaning the affected area in order to remove any kind of residual adhesive. And its good, if you leave that affected are open or uncovered in order to heal that wound. If bandage is required, covering the affected area with sterile gauze and then apply tape on that gauze instead of skin avert further irritation. And if skin is blistering, it is very essential to consult a medical professional for the treatment.
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If you see a skin reaction with a bandage or medical adhesive of specific brand, it’s is very essential to avoid those in the future. As several brands of medical adhesives, so if one doesn’t suits you while the other might not irritate your skin. And as it is seen that cloth and paper tapes are less expected to irritate the skin instead of bandages or plastic tapes. Furthermore, in anesthetic as well as topical antibiotic bandages, medicine is filled in pad portion which can be the reason behind an allergic reaction with the medicine instead of the adhesive. Moreover, if one is having stubborn problem with medical bandages, consulting doctor is very necessary as the doctor will guide you about what to do with your underlying conditions.
Moreover, some prominent leaders operating in the medical tapes market include Johnson & Johnson, Medtronic, Scapa Group PLC, Ad Tape & Label, 3M, Paul Hartmann AG and Andover Healthcare Inc., among others are aiming on hosting differentiated products viz. tapes for athletes and tapes which are skin sensitive in order to maintain their maximum market share and are adapting new strategies for doing proficient marketing.