What Are the Different Types of Medical Adhesives?

August 08, 2018

DermaMed Coatings Company is a custom manufacturer of medical adhesives, tapes, and other adhesive solutions. But what exactly is a medical adhesive and what are the different types of them? Adhesives are used in numerous applications throughout the medical, pharmaceutical, and cosmeceutical fields. When used in the medical field, adhesives are typically used for surgical procedures and appliance bonding. Adhesives — while they can be manufactured from numerous different materials — are commonly made using synthetic or biological formulations in order to help facilitate certain tasks, like as wound dressings, ostomy care, or can be incorporated into medical devices.

Medical adhesives can also be used multiple times over or can be designed as disposables or even dissolve. High strength bonding adhesives, for example, are one type of adhesive that is able to withstand extremely hot temperatures. There are other types of adhesives that are compatible with medical devices. Generally, there are three types of adhesives: pressure-sensitive adhesives, dissolvable, and electrically conductive adhesives.

Pressure-sensitive adhesives (or PSAs) can be made from a variety of different materials, but this type bonds to a surface by being pressed onto a substrate. These can be non-woven or include woven fabric in them, as PSAs are commonly used as a skin bandage.

Dissolvable adhesives and films are designed so they can react and dissolve when exposed to different variables. For instance, a common variable is water so that any time an adhesive comes in contact with water it dissolves instead of needing to be removed manually. And electrical conductive adhesives are designed so they can work in tandem with electronic sensor devices and electrodes. These adhesives are often in the form of a film or a gel.