Hydrogel Dressings

Hydrogel dressings are transparent, usually gel-based and have exceptional wound healing properties. Hydrogel dressings play an important role in wound care. The advantage of using hydrogel for wounds lies in its high water content. It provides a moist healing environment important for fast recovery and regulates fluid exchange from the wound surface.

How do hydrogel dressings work

The high water content of the hydrogel dressing keeps the wound area moist and offers protection from bacterial infection. Therefore, this dressing type promotes healing because moisture is important for wound recovery. Presence of moisture on the wound helps in autolytic debridement – that is removal of necrotic tissues from the wound surface. Hydrogel dressing also assists in wound granulation, epithelialization and epidermis repair plus offers trauma-free dressing change. Because of its cooling sensation, hydrogel gives relief from pain lasting up to six hours.


Features of hydrogel dressings

  • Has a high water content of 90%.
  • Requires a secondary dressing in order to keep it secure and hydrated well.
  • Needs changing every four days or whenever the dressing is seen to be wet and exudate-heavy.
  • Gel content in the dressing allows it to act as wound filler and fill in hard-to-treat “dead spaces”.
  • Non-adherent property reduces dressing change trauma.
  • Available in sheets, tubes, gauze, spray gel, pads, etc.


When to use hydrogel dressings

Hydrogel dressings are beneficial on wounds that are dry and painful.If the wound is necrotic, this dressing eliminates the need for too much cleaning-up during dressing change. Hydrogel bandages do not adhere to the wound thus allowing for pain-free removal.


Hydrogel wound dressings work on several types of wounds such as:

  • Pressure ulcers
  • Superficial burn/first degree burn
  • Venous ulcers/foot/leg ulcers
  • Diabetic ulcers
  • Partial thickness burn/second degree burn
  • Surgical/post-operative wounds
  • Laceration/abrasions
  • Partial/full thickness wounds
  • Superficial or low exudate wounds
  • Low-to-moderate exudate wounds
  • Arterial ulcers
  • Donor sites
  • Acute/traumatic wounds
  • Blisters


Different types of hydrogel dressings

Hydrogel dressings are available in adhesive and non-adhesive dressing types plus waterproof. You can select from absorbent hydrogel dressings, wound fillers, non-adherent hydrogel dressings, anti-microbial hydrogel dressings, hydrogel gauze dressings, adherent hydrogel dressings, silver hydrogel dressings, hydrocolloid hydrogel and transparent hydrogel dressings.


Hydrogel dressings are available as:

Amorphous hydrogel: It is a free-flowing gel packaged in tubes. Because of its excellent viscosity, this dressing helps fill in deeper wounds which are difficult to treat. It needs a secondary dressing to secure it in place.

Impregnated hydrogel: It is available as gel saturated on to gauze pads, gauze strips and non-woven sponge ropes. Hydrogel impregnated gauze dressings and the others can be used to pack in uneven wound surfaces. Needs a secondary dressing to provide a protective covering.

Sheet hydrogel: Hydrogel is saturated inside a fiber mesh which is thin and flat. Available as non-adhesive but with/without adhesive border. Hydrogel sheet dressings conform easily to the wound area.


When not to use hydrogel wound dressings

Hydrogel for wounds should be avoided if the wound exudate is high and the wound surface is too moist. Therefore, hydrogel wound dressings should not be used on moderate-to-heavily exuding wounds.


We offer high quality hydrogel dressings made by the best in the business like Medline Industries, MPM Medical, Southwest Technologies, Dumex/Derma Sciences, Covidien/Medtronic, Ferris Manufacturing, McKesson and Smith & Nephew.

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