What Is Medical Adhesive Tape?

medical adhesive tape applications

Medical tapes, commonly referred to as surgical tapes, are a commonly overlooked medical supply used to attach bandages and other dressings applied to the skin around wounds. While medical tape is developed from several different materials, one common attribute is that it is breathable to ensure comfort and simplicity for users. 

When you think of applying tape to skin, the pain of removing it is typically the first thing that comes to mind. However, medical tape is specifically designed with hypoallergenic adhesives which stick firmly to the skin but can easily be removed without harming the skin. Medical tape needs to be safe for the skin while also strong enough to work with the skin as it bends, moves, or dampens. 

Medical tape is constructed of a variety of materials such as cloth, transparent films, and paper. This allows medical experts to use different types of medical tape based on the type and severity of the wound. For example, medical tape made from cotton has a softer feel for sensitive wounds and elastic medical tape allows for more flexibility for wounds found on joints. 

Medical Adhesive Tape Applications

Just as there are a variety of wounds, there is also a variety of medical tape. Some of the most common forms of medical tape include:

  • Medical Adhesive Tape for Urgent Needs: When faced with an emergency, medical professionals need a strong fabric that firmly sticks while also being easy to tear. Transpore polyethylene tape is usually the main adhesive for emergencies. The tape is durable and sticks well to pretty much any surface, even hair, blood, and water. The tape is even waterproof which allows patients to keep their bandages on while bathing. While tough, these types of bandages are also breathable to allow airflow to encourage healing. Common applications of transpore polyethylene tapes include securing gauze over cuts and burns, splinting bone fractures, Butterfly stitch for closing cuts to prevent scarring, surgical solutions, wound care, wearable devices and sensors, labeling, and more.
  • Medical Adhesive Tape for Everyday Use: Less urgent scenarios typically call more micropore tapes which are made from paper. It is a hypoallergenic paper tape that is gentle to the touch but adheres well and can stay in place for days. They allow air to penetrate to promote healing.
  • Medical Adhesive Tape for Athletics: Athletes need tapes that are not only strong, but flexible and durable, as well. The answer for sporting injuries is zinc oxide tape, otherwise known as sports tape. These tapes are designed to conform to the movement of the body without losing its ability to adhere to the skin. It provides support while protecting athletes from injury. 
  • Medical Adhesive Tape For Wet Environments: Water typically counteracts many adhesives’ ability to stick to surfaces. However, specially designed tape can mitigate this problem if it is first applied to dry skin. Once in the water, the waterproof tape is flexible and works with flexible body parts such as fingers, toes, and joints. This type of tape is often used to prevent chafing and blisters.

Medical Tape from Converters, Inc.

The last thing medical professionals should worry about is the quality of their medical tape when performing important, and often life-saving, procedures. Providing staff with versatile medical adhesive tape allows professionals to deliver high-quality care in high-stress situations. Converters, Inc. is an FDA-registered and ISO 9001:2015-certified manufacturer. We work hard and take pride in our record of cleanliness, accuracy, and traceability. 

Consider us for your medical tape needs. We are a leader in the adhesives industry with the ability to turn pressure-sensitive tapes and adhesives into safe, medical-grade components for superior results. For more information, please request a quote or contact us today!