Made EasyCavilon skin care products Made Easy

Cavilon skin care products Made Easy

Products | Bianchi J, Hardy D

Cavilon skin care products Made EasySkin breakdown is common and may herald a wide range of potentially serious and debilitating complications, such as the development or enlargement of open wounds and increased risk of infection. Among the most challenging and concerning causes of skin breakdown are incontinence and periwound moisture. Prevention of skin breakdown in these situations requires excellent management of the predisposing cause and protection of vulnerable skin. Skin protectants ideally need to be effective, easy and comfortable to apply, long lasting and cost effective. This article details the characteristics and uses of the 3MTM CavilonTM range of skin care products that has been developed to protect vulnerable skin and prevent skin breakdown.

What are Cavilon skin care products?
The Cavilon range of products for skin protection includes:

  • Cavilon no sting barrier film
  • Cavilon durable barrier cream
  • Cavilon durable barrier cream + honey

Cavilon No Sting Barrier Film
Cavilon no sting barrier film is an alcohol-free liquid that, when applied to skin, dries quickly to form a protective transparent acrylate terpolymer coating on the skin, which is water repellent and conformable. (Table 1 illustrates the differences between traditional and liquid barrier film-based barrier products.)

Cavilon no sting barrier film is designed to protect damaged or 'at risk' skin from urine/faeces and other body fluids (such as wound exudate), and also from adhesive trauma and friction. It is sterile and can be applied to both intact and damaged skin.

The film is hypoallergenic, non-cytotoxic and has been developed to be non-sting, even when applied to damaged tissue. It has been clinically proven to protect skin from the effects of incontinence for up to 72 hours (Houser et al, 2010).

Cavilon  Durable Barrier Cream
Cavilon durable barrier cream provides long-lasting protection of the skin from bodily fluids, and also acts as a moisturiser/emollient. The protective barrier is provided by 1.3% dimethicone and acrylate terpolymer. Together they form a thin, durable, protective film on the skin, which can be used to prevent breakdown of intact skin. It is highly concentrated and should be applied in smaller amounts than traditional barrier creams.

Like Cavilon no sting barrier film, the cream will not transfer to underwear or incontinence pads, and is resistant to washing off, eliminating the need for frequent reapplication. Unusually for a cream, it allows tapes and dressings to adhere and, as with all Cavilon skin care products, it has been tested for hypoallergenicity.

Cavilon Durable Barrier Cream + Honey
Cavilon durable barrier cream + honey is a new product in the range. It has the same general indications as Cavilon durable barrier cream, but may be more suitable for patients with sensitive skin as the honey acts as a natural preservative, replacing parabens and perfumes, which are common sensitisers in some patient groups.

Sensitisation to parabens and perfumes
The incidence of sensitisation of patients to topical wound care formulations has been examined in a number of studies. Wilson et al (1991) found that around 15% of leg ulcer patients showed positive patch tests results for preservatives. More recently, Tavadia et al (2003) found that many leg ulcer patients were allergic to fragrances and also to creams containing preservatives.

It is now recognised that patients with leg ulceration have a higher susceptibility to contact dermatitis than other patient groups (Beldon, 2009) and it is important to have low allergen alternatives for this patient population.

The need for skin protection
The skin is the largest organ of the body and provides a number of important functions, including acting as a vital barrier between the body and the external environment (Woo et al, 2009). Damage to the skin compromises the barrier, and can have a range of effects, including discomfort, and increased risk of infection and further skin breakdown. A wide range of factors can increase the vulnerability of skin to damage. Excessive moisture on the skin surface and dryness of the skin are among the most common factors (Gray et al, 2011; White-Chu et al, 2011).

Faecal and/or urinary incontinence are experienced by more than half of people living in nursing homes (Zimmaro Bliss, et al 2006). Incontinence-associated dermatitis (IAD), also known as moisture lesions, is a painful skin condition characterised by irritation and inflammation. IAD occurs when the perineal or perigenital skin comes into prolonged contact with urine, faeces or a combination of both resulting in tissue breakdown, and increased risk of infection and pressure ulcers (Ermer-Seltun, 2011). In turn, these effects may have a major impact on an individual's physical and psychological wellbeing. Therefore, avoiding or minimising skin damage that may result from incontinence is imperative (Bianchi, 2011).

Periwound skin damage can occur around chronic wounds as a result of excessive moisture due to wound exudate and/or damage from inflammatory enzymes in the exudate (Williams, 1998; WUWHS, 2007). The resulting degradation of keratin compromises the barrier function of the periwound skin and can result in further skin breakdown that may enlarge the wound (Guest et al, 2011; Cameron et al, 2011).

With age, the skin becomes thinner, loses collagen and elastin and there is a reduced blood supply. This results in the skin becoming more fragile and easily damaged (Figure 1). The reduction in sebum production that comes with old age often means that the skin becomes dry and flaky, which may cause itching that leads to scratching and excoriation (Ratliff and Fletcher, 2007). The dryness combined with reduced skin flexibility may also allow cracks to occur that can be colonised by bacteria, and increase the risk of damage due to shear and friction (Bianchi and Cameron, 2008; Ratliff and Fletcher 2007). Moisturising skin to reduce dryness may help to reduce the risk of breakdown and enhance the skin health of patients (Stephen-Haynes, 2011).