By Dan Kennedy, PMO Medical Devices
FORT DETRICK, Md. (Feb. 6, 2012) — The U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command has initiated steps to evaluate a new bioelectric bandage
A new bioelectric bandage is being examined by the Army to see if it speeds up healing, provides greater pain control, reduces infection risk, and decreases scarring. (Courtesy image)
Small silver and zinc dots embedded into cloth create micro-currents in the presence of moisture. This may create an anti-microbial environment and provide pain reduction.
The use of silver on burns has a long history of preventing infections. The combination of silver, zinc, and moisture is purported to create pain-reducing antimicrobial micro-currents. According to literature from the manufacturer, the results of this bandage dressing include faster healing, greater pain control, reduced incidence of infection, and decreased scarring.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has cleared the device for antimicrobial wound care, which is the primary reason for the Army’s genuine interest in the product. The bandage is currently being used on hard-to-heal wounds, with multiple research studies underway. Anecdotal results are promising, especially with regard to pain control. In some cases, wound pain is reported to be reduced dramatically.
Captain Kevin Russell
Navy Capt Kevin Russell is the Director of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center (AFHSC). The AFHSC works to promote, maintain and enhance the health of the military and military-associated populations by providing relevant, timely and comprehensive surveillance information.
The recently-released movie “Contagion” could easily be dismissed as purely Hollywood fantasy about a pandemic that kills millions of people in a few months. Yet, many of us at federal agencies know first-hand the panic and devastation that can ensue when a pandemic like the swine flu-scare a few years back grips the world.
At the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center (AFHSC), one of our primary goals is to support global health surveillance and response to emerging infectious diseases. Effective global disease surveillance, timely detection of outbreaks and appropriate responses to control epidemics are the essential tools to our service members and the global health community.
That’s why AFHSC, through its division of Global Emerging Infections Surveillance and Response System (GEIS), recently funded the development of two new kits cleared by the Food and Drug Administration that will increase the speed and accuracy of diagnosing influenza among military personnel in deployed settings.
United States Army Institute of Surgical Research (USAISR)
Amy Apodaca works at the U.S. Army Institute of Surgical Research‘s Joint Theater Trauma System.
The development of a well-designed and concise research plan is the key to any successful research project. Good research plans provide a detailed map for the conceptual and logistical frameworks that serve as the support structure for your research project.
An important first step toward providing a sound conceptual foundation for your research project is the development of solid research questions and hypotheses. This process typically begins with a preliminary review of the existing literature for your topic. A research question poses a relationship between two or more variables but phrases the relationship in terms of some question.
A well researched and thought out question will help focus your ideas and ensure you are collecting the appropriate data. This is a critical step in the research process. The research question determines what, where, when, and how the data are collected and is an important link between the conceptual and logistic aspects of your research plan.
While reviewing the current literature and formulating your ideas, keep the following questions in mind:
- Why is this research important? What is it that we don’t know or fully understand?
- What have other researchers in my field done?
- What areas need further exploration?
- Can my study help fill in these gaps or lead to greater understanding?