GCU students develop 3D printed, infection fighting bandage

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The bandage has built-in bacteria fighting and reduces infections, unlike bandages you buy at the store. (Source: Grand Canyon University) The bandage has built-in bacteria fighting and reduces infections, unlike bandages you buy at the store. (Source: Grand Canyon University)
This motivated them to develop this bandage that sticks and conforms to any kind of cut. (Source: Grand Canyon University) This motivated them to develop this bandage that sticks and conforms to any kind of cut. (Source: Grand Canyon University)
(3TV/CBS 5) -

Some very special honors students at Grand Canyon University are hard at work on a medical breakthrough: a low-cost, 3D printed hydro colloidal bandage!

The bandage has built-in bacteria fighting and reduces infections, unlike bandages you buy at the store.

The idea of this bandage came about after the students first learned that a small cut could lead to a severe infection in the arm, leg or toes and eventually require amputation.

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A lot of times, the cuts can even lead to death.

The hope here is to get organizations working in third world countries like Rwanda, to prevent amputations.

This motivated them to develop this bandage that sticks and conforms to any kind of cut.

The bandage is also waterproof and strong enough to stop bleeding and prevent infection, so the person has time to get professional medical help before infection sets in.

"We're looking to do more of a Tom's model, where it's a buy one, give one. Our product is universally applicable, so people from Rwanda to Phoenix are able to use our product," said Gabriela Calhoun, one of the developers of the 3D bandage.

"You think this is something that could replace the everyday band-aid?" asked CBS 5 This Morning anchor Preston Phillips.

Calhoun replied, "Yeah, Its actually a bandage 2.0. We have staphylococcus and streptococcus fighting infections in our bandage, also pressure, which allows for a better bandage than a band-aid."
  
Calhoun says this hydro colloidal bandage that is being developed is 95% effective in wound infection prevention, compared to regular bandages that don’t prevent infection. 

Right now, testing continues.

Approval from the FDA is hopefully next.

"What makes this so unique compared to a normal bandage is this actually has products in it to aid the healing process, so you'll heal at a faster rate and it can also kill infection, so not only will you have something that will be fighting infection that you'd have, but your wound would be healing at an accelerated rate," said Ethan Nichols, one of the developers of the 3D bandage.
  
This bandage is months away from real-world use.

The prototype is complete.

In addition to getting these band-aids to third world villages, the students say they're looking to sell these in places like Target and Walmart for around $2 each.

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