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Powerful Adhesion, Easy on the Skin – Wound Dressings with Silicone Adhesives Are Winning Over the Traditional Wound Care Market

The invention of silicone-coated wound dressings has fundamentally improved treatment of severe wounds. Initially used only in hospitals, these products and their advantages are now increasingly being brought to bear in home settings as well. And through continued enhancements to its SILPURAN® portfolio, WACKER has been playing a major role in that development.

The Essity company of Sweden markets both conventional bandages with acrylate-based adhesives, as well as high-tech wound dressings featuring silicones. “There’s a case to be made for both technologies,” says Sascha Casu, who is responsible for Essity’s Acute Wound Care division in Hamburg. “Silicones are much kinder to the skin and have better adhesive and release properties. Acrylates, on the other hand, are comparatively inexpensive and adhere more securely on the first application.”

Silicones are much kinder to the skin and have better adhesive and release properties.

Sascha Casu, Essity

Silicone-coated wound dressings are, however, the preferred choice for professional treatment of severe or weeping wounds, especially in hospital settings, Casu notes. But they are also being used increasingly for the treatment of chronic wounds and on persons with skin conditions and sensitive skin.

Here they keep wounds from drying out, do not stick to wounds and provide gentle adhesion to the skin. The optimum environment they create for healing also has a positive impact on treatment progress.

From Clinical to Private Applications – Silicone Adhesives Are on the Rise in Wound Care

Up to now, silicone wound dressings have primarily been used in clinical medicine, but interest in the advantageous properties of silicone adhesives is now growing on the mass market, too. The dressings can be removed painlessly and are extremely comfortable, which are critical factors. “The demand for professional wound-care material for home use is rising, and pharmacies are selling these products more and more,” reports WACKER Sales Manager Dajana Westenberg.

Dr. Thomas Gröer, who manages silicone adhesives within Application Technology at the Burghausen site, names the key reason for growing success in general wound care: “We’ve managed to develop silicone adhesives that stick well, even when a relatively thin layer is applied.”

Silicone-coated wound dressings are the preferred choice for professional treatment of severe or weeping wounds, especially in hospital settings,

Sascha Casu, Essity

Optimized Adhesive Strength Allows a Thinner Silicone Coating for More Efficient Processing

WACKER chemists studied the properties of silicone gels intensively, with the aim of generating the same adhesive strength with less material. “We were able to adapt the silicone adhesives to make them adhere much more strongly. With that improvement, a thinner silicone layer is quite sufficient,” Gröer observes. Reducing the amount of gel applied has clear advantages: saving material means thinner dressings and lower costs.

For manufacturers of wound dressings, that opens up a whole new array of opportunities. According to Egbert Klaassen, who manages wound care applications at WACKER SILICONES, “Customers increasingly opt for the adhesive with higher added value. That means our silicones, without question.”


WACKER has pioneered the development of silicone-coated dressings and bandages for professional wound care. For some 25 years, the company has been producing solid and liquid silicone rubber for medical applications as part of its SILPURAN® brand of silicone gels. These products have passed ISO 10993 and USP Class VI tests, which means they meet the high standards of the health care industry. The company’s WACKER CLEAN OPERATIONS internal standard takes it one step further, guaranteeing exceptional, medical-grade purity during the manufacturing and packaging processes as well.