Composition and characteristics of adhesive biomaterials

Soft Tissue Adhesives

Most soft tissue adhesives are intended to be temporary, that is, they are removed or degrade when wound healing is sufficiently advanced for the tissue to maintain its integrity. Effective adhesion can be obtained on dry skin or wound surfaces by using wound dressing strips with acrylate-based adhesives. However, on wound surfaces that are wet with tissue fluid or blood, the adhesive must be able to be spread on such wet surfaces, provide adequate working time, develop and maintain adhesion, desirably provide hemostasis, facilitate wound healing, and maintain biocompatibility. Positive antimicrobial action would be an additional advantage.

Few, if any, systems comply with all these requirements. Currently, there are two principal systems in clinical use— cyanoacrylate esters and fibrin sealants. Another glue based on a gelatiti-resorcinol-formaldehyde combination still receives limited use. An interesting but still experimental system based on polypeptides from marine organisms (mussel adhesive) does not seem to have developed inro practical use.

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