The history of healthcare is closely connected to the history of adhesives. As medical technology evolved, more sensors and monitors were created. Thus, the question of how to keep them in place became more pressing. Believe it or not, the surgical tape goes back as far as 1845. 3M itself was created in 1902, though at the time, it was only making sandpaper. With the creation of medical wearables, the need for long-term and non-irritating medical adhesive further strengthens its hold in medical research.
What does 3M bring to the table?
According to 3M, the limit of wear for medical adhesives was up to 14 days. That’s only up until recently with the announcement of their new adhesive, the 3M Medical Tape 4578 which doubles that time. This brings the wearability to 28 days. In addition, this prowess was accomplished “without compromising skin health”, as stated by 3M’s director of Global Business for 3M Medical Materials and Technologies, Chad Reeds.
.@3M unveiled a new #medical tape at @IME_Events's MD&M West 2023. Medical Tape 4578 can stick to the skin for up to 28 days and is intended for use with a wide array of health monitors, sensors and long-term medical #wearables. Video: https://t.co/xqBQJFWMna#healthcare
— Machine Design (@MachineDesign) February 23, 2023
The 3M Medical Tape 4578 also has a prolonged storage time of up to a year, showing that improvements have been made to its adhesiveness. Consequently, it can be used more easily, as it is not as time-sensitive as medical adhesives used to be. The use case here goes beyond the normal bandaid.
With prolonged wearability for the 3M Medical Tape 4578, patients wearing monitors — for example, a continuous glucose monitor — could be retained longer. It would also allow specialists designing those monitors to be more creative. They could possibly find new and better ways to affix such devices to patients. Something as little as an adhesive can be a catalyst for improving the health of patients. Medical alert devices, for example, could very well soon be worn directly on the skin.
Photo credits: The feature image is owned by 3M and has been provided for press usage.
Source: PR Newswire