Dive Straight In – With Skin-Compatible Silicone Gels for Stoma Patients

People who have artificial bowel or bladder openings rely heavily on the composition of their stoma bags for their quality of life. They now stand to benefit from a major enhancement developed by a British company called Trio Healthcare. Thanks to modern stoma systems secured with specialty silicone adhesives from WACKER, patients can do all kinds of sporting activities, even swimming.

Artificial bowel and bladder openings, also known as stomas, are a continuous burden on their long-suffering wearers. For greater freedom of movement, the necessary systems, including bags, are stuck straight onto the skin. In the past, an acrylic-based hydrocolloid was generally used for this purpose. However, this places the skin under constant stress and often leads to chronic inflammation.

Traditional stoma plates that are attached to the body by means of hydrocolloids put the skin under constant stress. Sil2TM Breathable Silicone Technology is based on stoma plates coated with WACKER SILPURAN® adhesive that adhere directly to the skin and secure the stoma bag to the body.

Silicone adhesives provide optimal breathability and moisture transmissibility.

Trio Healthcare therefore set itself the task of developing innovative solutions that improve stoma patients’ quality of life. For CEO Lloyd Pearce, this was a personal mission, as a member of his own family is affected. “One-half of all stoma patients suffer from skin conditions and irritated skin. I wanted to do something about that.”

No sooner said than done. Trio Healthcare is the first manufacturer to develop and launch a complete series of breathable silicone adhesives onto the market: Sil2TM Breathable Silicone Technology. In this system, the base plate that sticks the bag securely to the skin is already coated with a silicone adhesive. This imposes exacting demands on the adhesive strength of the silicone used. The SILPURAN® brand of biocompatible silicone gels from WACKER meets these requirements perfectly.

One-half of all stoma patients suffer from skin conditions and irritated skin. I wanted to do something about that.

Lloyd Pearce, CEO of Trio Healthcare

Under the base plate, the skin quickly starts to sweat. Silicone has the advantage of being both water-repellent and water-vapor permeable. An additional approach is to use skin protection rings made from highly elastic SILPURAN® silicone rubber to secure the stoma. These rings are flexible enough to fit snugly around the colostomy to create a seal. “There must be no fluid leakage. All moisture must be kept away from the skin in order to prevent skin irritation,” says Dr. Thomas Gröer, head of an applications laboratory at WACKER SILICONES in Burghausen. “Our new silicone adhesives can do this, which makes them ideal for stoma care.”

Test strips being prepared in a WACKER applications lab to determine the adhesive strength of various silicone adhesives.

Lloyd Pearce, CEO of Trio Healthcare, believes there is plenty of untapped potential in this area. “We won’t stop researching and trying out new things. No stoma patient should have to deal with severe skin irritation.”

High-quality silicone gels are becoming increasingly important in health care.

Skin-friendly silicone adhesives are suitable for all conceivable areas of application: insulin pumps, EEG sensors, location sensors for patients with dementia – many wearable medical devices are now attached to the skin with silicone. For Thomas Gröer in the chemical laboratory at WACKER, this means, “There is still plenty for us to do.”

While hydrocolloids adhere well and absorb moisture, they are not permeable to water vapor or gases.

Lloyd Pearce, CEO of Trio Healthcare