Activheal® PHMB Foam featured in the British Journal of Nursing

Sep 12, 2017 | News

Activheal® PHMB Foam featured in the British Journal of Nursing

Sep 12, 2017 | News

ActivHeal® PHMB foam is a safe and efficacious option for reducing bacterial load and that PHMB is an effective anti-microbial agent…

Natalie Wood

Associate Product Manager, Advanced Medical Solutions Ltd

Case Study

Infection is considered to be the most frequent complication in non-healing wounds where it can prolong patient treatment times and increase resource use (Gottrup et al, 2013). This places a significant burden on the healthcare services and for patients, a chronic, non-healing wound can be debilitating resulting in pain, reduced mobility and increased social isolation.

The current approach to the management of chronic wounds is standardised through wound bed preparation involving a two stage process of analysis and management of local barriers to healing. These include management of moisture in the wound, reducing the necrotic burden and managing the bioburden. All wounds contain bacteria and research has been focused on investigating how biofilm development impacts on wound healing. Biofilms in chronic wounds are thought to be present in 60-100% of non healing wounds (WUWHS, 2016) and are causative factors in wound chronicity (Gottrup et al, 2013).

Advanced Medical Solutions Ltd has launched an antimicrobial foam under the ActivHeal range called ActivHeal PHMB foam. The polyurethane foam pad contains the antimicrobial substance, PHMB, which is released in the presence of exudate and is effective against a broad spectrum of microorganisms.

Activheal PHMB was assessed on 32 patients attending out-patient services throughout the UK. Wounds were of moderate to high exudate levels and tissue types were necrotic, sloughy and granulating. At the end of the evaluation period, 7 wounds had progressed to healing and 14 had progressed significantly to a different wound care product. The other 11 were still receiving the treatment of PHMB foam. No wounds increased in size, and there were positive changes in wound dimensions observed. There was a noted reduction in pain reported by all patients and a trend towards lower levels of exudate was seen in the majority of wounds assessed. These results suggest that the foam dressing effectively managed exudate levels and maintained a moist wound environment.

The study concluded that PHMB ActivHeal foam is a safe and efficacious option for reducing bacterial load and that PHMB is an effective anti-microbial agent. ActivHeal PHMB foam provides a broad spectrum of antimicrobial activity and offers a viable alternative to silver, iodine and honey-based dressings (BJN June 2017).

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