Science

Now, sprays to repair body parts, treat burns

PTI London | Updated on August 28, 2012 Published on August 28, 2012

Scientists have developed a range of sprays that can help repair body parts, heal wounds, protect teeth enamel and even prevent post-surgery complications.

Researchers have developed a spray-on bandage for minor cuts and scrapes that helps to keep them clean and free from infection.

Based on a plastic that is used in Lycra, called polyethylene glycol, the thick liquid is sprayed on to the wound and sets within five minutes, the Daily Mail reported.

When the plastic sets it pulls the edges of the wound together, aiding healing and helping to prevent infection.

“Sprays allow more accurate and consistent delivery of the drug or treatment, and allow it to be held in the controlled sterile environment of a spray can,” Sam Shuster from the Newcastle University said.

Use in dentistry

Spray-on teeth are also being developed by scientists at King’s College London and Imperial College London.

The spray contains a type of calcium and helps repair damage to the tough outer coating of teeth — the enamel — and may help repair any exposed dentin.

Non-stick coating for organs

Scientists have also devised a non-stick coating for organs that prevents them sticking together after surgery.

The coating prevents adhesions - a common side-effect of surgery that causes tough scar tissue to form between organs, which pull them out of shape.

A study of cases where the spray has been used showed that 90 per cent of patients were adhesion-free seven days after surgery.

A trial at Loma Linda University in the US is looking at a similar product for use in adhesions in paediatric heart surgery.

To treat burns, a silicone spray is being used by doctors.

In a US Army Institute of Surgical Research trial, patients will be treated with the spray or a placebo each day for three months.

Its thought silicone can work by keeping more moisture sealed inside the skin and reducing inflammation.

Doctors at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, Stanmore, have used a spray on patients undergoing hip replacements and found it reduced blood loss by 32 per cent.

Doctors are spraying patients with a natural blood compound to dramatically reduce blood loss after surgery.

The spray contains fibrin, part of the body’s own repair system that provides the ‘scaffolding’ for blood clots.

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Published on August 28, 2012
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