Impact of moisture on the pressure delivering potential of pressure garments

Lisa Macintyre, Monali Dahale, Michelle Rae

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
200 Downloads (Pure)


Pressure garments are the main method of treatment and prophylaxis for hypertrophic burn scars. The pressure they exert on the scarred skin prevents contractures from forming, reduces the itchiness and pruritus associated with active hypertrophic scars and is believed, by many, to hasten normalisation of the scar tissue. The pressure exerted is believed to be critical to treatment success and can be predicted based on laboratory measurement of the fabric’s tension profile. All previous research on the pressures delivered by pressure garments has been undertaken using dry fabrics in either laboratory or clinical conditions. However, many patients have complained of increased perspiration when wearing pressure garments and many burn victims live and work in hot conditions where high levels of perspiration may be expected. This paper investigated the impact of moisture content on fabric tension, and thus the pressure exerting ability of pressure garments. Four different fabrics currently used in the construction of pressure garments were evaluated in 7 different states of ‘wetness’ from completely dry to completely saturated in water or artificial perspiration. Our results showed that the tension, and therefore pressure delivering ability, of fabrics used in pressure garments was significantly reduced when they were wet but that the amount or type of ‘wetness’ did not have a significant impact on pressure delivering ability.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e365–e373
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Burn Care and Research
Issue number4
Early online date3 Jul 2015
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2016


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