Mechanical and contact characteristics of foam materials within wound dressings: Theoretical and practical considerations in treatment

Amit Gefen*, Paulo Alves, Dimitri Beeckman, José Luis Lázaro-Martínez, Hadar Lev-Tov, Bijan Najafi, Terry Swanson, Kevin Woo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the treatment of acute and chronic wounds, the clinical performance of a given foam-based dressing, and, ultimately, the wound healing and cost of care outcomes are strongly influenced by the mechanical performance of the foam material/s within that dressing. Most aspects of the mechanical performance of foam materials, for example, their stiffness, frictional properties, conformability, swelling characteristics and durability, and the overall mechanical protection provided by a foam-based dressing to a wound strongly depend on the microstructure of the foam components, particularly on their microtopography, density and porosity. This article, therefore, provides, for the first time, a comprehensive, self-inclusive compilation of clinically relevant theoretical and practical considerations, based on published analytical and experimental research as well as clinical experience related to the mechanical performance of foams in foam-based wound dressings. The current bioengineering information is useful for establishing understanding of the importance of mechanical properties of foams in foam-based dressings among clinicians and researchers in industry and academia, and other potential stakeholders in the wound care field, for example, regulators and buyers. This information is also particularly important for the development of standardised test methods for the evaluation of foam-based wound dressings and resulting standard mechanical performance metrics for these dressings.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Wound Journal
StateAccepted/In press - 2022


  • foam dressing properties, bioengineering testing methods
  • stiffness and durability
  • strength of adhesion and adherence models
  • treatment of wounds


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