Engineering the Next Gen Band-Aid
An approach using nanotech to improve wound healing and antibacterial properties
It’s the 1920s, Johnson and Johnson is well established for their production of large, cotton gauze dressings that are sterile and sealed against germs — a first of its kind. An employee by the name of Earle Dickson is recently married to a young, rather accident-prone woman. Her domestic cuts and burns are too minor for the company’s large surgical dressings, so Earle, in a moment of vision, cuts a small square of the sterile gauze (the white part of the band-aid) and secures it to her finger with an adhesive strip.
Earle is forced to make so many of these bandages for his clumsy wife, he devises a method for a small production of them. In order to keep the adhesive part from sticking together, he lines them with a crinoline fabric (the brown part of the band-aid), and soon Johnson and Johnson beings production of Earle’s invention. In a brilliant marketing move, they distribute, for free, an unlimited number of band-aids to all the Boy Scout Troops across America. It doesn’t take long for them to become a household item. It is estimated that Johnson and Johnson has since made more than a 100 million band-aids.
These small bandages have become a staple in every household, as it is the go to item for small cuts, burns, gashes, etc. However, there is two main problems with these band-aids. They have low antibacterial properties and they don’t heal wounds as efficiently and as fast as they could. I set out to solve this, and engineer the next generation of band-aids. Introducing BandX.
Now it goes without saying, I’m sure you are well aware of what the band-aid solves and I’m sure you’ve used it at least once in your life to heal the cuts, scrapes, gashes, etc. But the problem isn’t that the band-aid doesn’t work, it’s that the band-aid could be better, yet it’s still not. That’s why I set out to create BandX.
Let’s dive into the specific problem though. Conventional healing takes far too long, and bandaids (whose job is to keep the injury moisturized) are used to help solve this problem, but it still doesn’t always work.