Hospital acquired infections, remains a significant health issue to be tackled and the number of mortality as a result of this keeps increasing every year. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria, such as methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus and vancomycin-resistant enterococci, cause about 70 percent of such infections.
In an attempt to reduce the incidence of such events, researchers have now come up with a unique wound dressing with antibiotic coating. This microbicidal coating can be chemically bonded to gauze bandages, socks and even hospital bedding and gowns. The coating is effective against the above-mentioned forms of antibiotic resistant bacteria in hospital settings.
The coating not only prevents bacterial attack and colonization but also prevents resistance being developed. The coating comprises thousands of nitrogen clusters that permanently bond to substances such as gauze and fabric.
The coating also does what it was created to do - aids healing. When added to gauze, it makes the material super absorbent, pulling excess moisture away from the sore. Other dressings use a process that allows molecules to diffuse into the air and into the wound, which can slow healing and increases the chance germs will develop resistance.
The antibiotic substance has to be efficiently mass-produced in such a way it can be permanently made adherent to wound dressings or perhaps it could even be applied to ready-to-wear clothing. However, large-scale industrial manufacturing would be required to produce huge quantities of these commodities.
Other potential uses of the coating would be designing of special clothing for soldiers in the field who often don't have time to change or shower, manufacturing of hospital gowns and bedding to prevent spread of bugs.