Wound Dressing Performance Testing
Wound treatment demands a variety of properties from dressings: absorbency, moisture vapour transmission and for comfort conformability. In some situations a waterproof dressing is required and strike through of exudates is generally undesirable. Other performance aspects are anti-microbial properties and odour control.
The laboratories at MET a provide a complete suite of testing to EN standards:
- EN 13726-1:2002 Test methods for primary wound dressings - Part 1: Aspects of absorbency.
Testing is normally carried out to both EN and BP methods. This gives information on the quantity of fluid a dressing can absorb and its fluid retention properties when compressed.
- EN 13726-2:2002 Test methods for primary wound dressings. Moisture vapour transmission rate of permeable film dressings.
MVTR forms an important part of the fluid handling properties of a dressing. It influences both the hydration of the wound and that of surrounding tissues where maceration may be a problem.
- EN 13726-3: 2003 Non-active medical devices: test methods for primary wound dressings. Part 3. Waterproofness
Avoid strike through of blood or other fluids, measure the pressure of water required to penetrate the dressing.
- EN 13726-4: 2003 Non-active medical devices: test methods for primary wound dressings. Part 4. Conformability
How comfortable is a dressing to wear? Conformability measures the resistance to stretching and the ability of the dressing material to return to its original shape.
- EN 13726-6: 2003 Non-active medical devices: test methods for primary wound dressings. Part 6. Odour control
Control of odour can be very important for patient dignity. MET has developed an analysis method using chromatography and mass-spectroscopy to quantify the effectiveness of dressings in absorbing odour.