Researchers at the University of New Hampshire have created an easy-to-make, low-cost injectable hydrogel that could help wounds heal faster, especially for patients with compromised health issues.
Wound healing can be complex and challenging, especially when a patient has other health obstacles that seriously impede the process. Often injectable hydrogels are applied to irregular shaped wounds, like diabetic ulcers, to help form a temporary matrix, or structure, to keep the wound stable while cells rejuvenate. The caveat is that current hydrogels are not porous enough and do not allow neighboring cells to pass through toward the wound to help it mend.
“While valuable for helping patients, current hydrogels have limited clinical efficacy,” said Kyung Jae Jeong, assistant professor of chemical engineering at UNH. “We discovered a simple solution to make the hydrogels more porous and therefore help to speed up the healing.”