Researchers have created a remote-activated smart patch


This dressing has a microprocessor the size of a seal and can be remote controlled simply through a smartphone or other compatible device. This innovation has as main objective to avoid infections and to reduce the time of cicatrization.

The cleansing dressing was developed by scientists at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Harvard Medical School and MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), it consists of conductive cotton fibers coated with a gel in which antibiotics, regeneration of tissues, analgesics among other medications.

Each of the fibers may be individually charged with a specific drug required for each treatment. A microcontroller, remotely activated, causes a small electrical voltage which heats the fibers and the hydrogel of the napkin, thus, consequently, releases the medicament into the skin.

This device has the ability to control each of its fibers and precisely distribute the dose of the drugs according to the prescription time of each.

“This combination and control can greatly improve and accelerate the wound healing process”, said Ali Tamayol, a professor of mechanical engineering and materials at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, which is “a great advantage compared to other systems”.

It is thus anticipated that the system will initially be used only to treat chronic skin wounds from diabetes, which, as a rule, have a long healing process. Also in order to test the effectiveness of the dressing.

The dressing may also be used on soldiers wounded in combat. And since it has a lot of versatility and customization, it will also serve to stimulate faster healing of bullet wounds and shrapnel or to prevent only the appearance of infections in remote environments.

Although the system has yet to undergo some testing, researchers are also working on incorporating sensors that measure glucose, pH and other health related indicators of skin tissue.