Impedance sensing device enables early detection of pressure ulcers in vivo.


Journal Article

When pressure is applied to a localized area of the body for an extended time, the resulting loss of blood flow and subsequent reperfusion to the tissue causes cell death and a pressure ulcer develops. Preventing pressure ulcers is challenging because the combination of pressure and time that results in tissue damage varies widely between patients, and the underlying damage is often severe by the time a surface wound becomes visible. Currently, no method exists to detect early tissue damage and enable intervention. Here we demonstrate a flexible, electronic device that non-invasively maps pressure-induced tissue damage, even when such damage cannot be visually observed. Using impedance spectroscopy across flexible electrode arrays in vivo on a rat model, we find that impedance is robustly correlated with tissue health across multiple animals and wound types. Our results demonstrate the feasibility of an automated, non-invasive 'smart bandage' for early detection of pressure ulcers.

Full Text

Cited Authors

  • Swisher, SL; Lin, MC; Liao, A; Leeflang, EJ; Khan, Y; Pavinatto, FJ; Mann, K; Naujokas, A; Young, D; Roy, S; Harrison, MR; Arias, AC; Subramanian, V; Maharbiz, MM

Published Date

  • March 17, 2015

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 6 /

Start / End Page

  • 6575 -

PubMed ID

  • 25779688

Pubmed Central ID

  • 25779688

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2041-1723

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 2041-1723

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1038/ncomms7575


  • eng