SMTL Dressings Datacard

Product Name: Biofilm
Classification Name: Dressing Hydrocolloid, Permeable
Manufacturer: Biotrol, distributed by CliniMed Ltd


Biofilm consists of a non-woven polyester fabric sheet, coated with an adhesive mass composed of polyisobutylene containing hydrophilic particles of gelatin, pectin and carboxymethylcellulose. The polyester fabric, which is permeable to water vapour and gases, is highly hydrophobic and will resist penetration by aqueous solutions or bacteria, under normal conditions of use. When the dressing comes into contact with wound exudate, the hydrocolloid base absorbs water and swells to form a hydrophilic gel. In the dry state, the dressing is virtually impermeable to water vapour, but as it takes up fluid and a gel is produced, the permeability increases until a steady state is reached.


Biofilm may be used in the management of leg ulcers, leg pressure sores, and many types of granulating wounds. It can also be of value in the treatment of wounds covered with dry black necrotic skin, such as the `black heels' that occur on bedridden patients.


It is not recommended that Biofilm be used in the treatment of clinically or grossly infected wounds and it is probably not the product of choice for heavily exuding wounds, at least in the initial stages of treatment, as it would require replacing too frequently.

Method of use

An appropriately sized dressing is removed from the paper carrier and lightly pressed into position over the wound. It is recommended that in order to ensure good adhesion, Biofilm should be allowed a minimum overlap of 2-3 cm past the edges of the wound on to the surrounding skin. Because Biofilm is adhesive, no additional dressings are usually required, but on areas such as the sacral region, where the edges of the product are likely to be disturbed by movement, it may be necessary to cover the dressing and surrounding area with a piece of an adhesive dressing retention sheet (such as Hypafix or Mefix ).

The use of secondary dressings should be kept to a minimum, as they may reduce the permeability of the dressing and thus inhibit the loss of water vapour. Upon removal of the dressing, a viscous gel with a characteristic odour may be found on the surface of the wound. This is not pus, but consists of the partially liquefied adhesive mass. It therefore does not indicate the presence of infection. It may be removed by gently cleansing with sterile normal saline before the application of the next dressing.

The gel forming component of the dressing is also available in the form of a powder, which may be used in conjunction with the sheet to increase the absorbent capacity of the dressing when used in the management of heavily exuding wounds.

Frequency of Change

The frequency of dressing changes will be governed by the state of the wound. If large volumes of exudate are produced, daily changes may be required; but on other wounds, the dressing may be left in place for up to seven days before it must be changed. Because Biofilm is highly permeable when hydrated, it will permit the loss of significant volumes of moisture by evaporation through the non-woven fabric backing, and therefore fewer dressing changes may be required than would be the case with a less permeable product.


Biofilm is presented individually wrapped in a peel pouch, sterilised by ethylene oxide.


10 cm 10 cm

20 cm 20 cm

5 gram of Powder*

*Sterilised by gamma irradiation


1. Smith JM, et al., A randomised trial of Biofilm dressing for venous leg ulcers, Phlebology, 1992, 7, 108-113.

2. Moores J, The impact of Drug Tariff restrictions on standards of care, Professional Nurse, August 1988, 466-472.

3. Diamond P, A modern approach, J. Comm. Nurs., April, 1992, 4-6.

4. Skene AI, et al., Venous leg ulcers: A prognostic index to predict time to healing, BMJ, 1992, 305, 1119-1121.

Revision Details

Revision AuthorDr S. Thomas
Revision No 1.5
Revision date1997/12/16

This datacard has been prepared from data provided by the manufacturer and/or from published literature.

All materials copyright © 1992-2007 by the Surgical Materials Testing Lab. unless otherwise stated.

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Last Modified: Thursday, 28-Mar-2002 10:20:23 GMT