A pilot study on post-burn healing: Optimising scar outcome through the use of a silicone-based film-forming wound dressing

Fiona Poelchow1,2,  Rosemary Kendell2, Associate Professor Dale Edgar1,2,4,5, Winthrop Professor Fiona Wood1,2,3, Professor Jim Codde3

1Fiona Wood Foundation, Murdoch, Australia, 2State Adult Burns Unit, Fiona Stanley Hospital, Perth, Australia, 3Institute for Health Research, The University of Notre Dame Australia, Fremantle, Australia, 4Burn Injury Research Node, The University of Notre Dame Australia, Fremantle, Australia, 5School of Physiotherapy, The University of Notre Dame Australia, Fremantle, Australia


Introduction: Traditionally, silicone has been contra-indicated for application to unhealed wounds, however, in recent years, a new form of silicone has been developed that is suitable for application on non-epithelialised wounds, and claims to minimise patient symptoms.  Stratamed and StrataXRT are semi-occlusive, self-drying, transparent, bacteriostatic and inert silicone gels which form an invisible dressing layer that provides a moist wound healing environment which, in turn, may enable faster re-epithelialisation.

Objectives: To determine if early application of film-forming silicone products, a) reduces healing times; b) reduces patient pain associated with donor site and burns dressings; and, c) positively impacts the scar outcome.

Methods: Utilising a prospective, randomised, single-centre, double-blinded design, this pilot study will assess the efficacy of topical film-forming silicone in early wound care of acute burn wounds of non-surgical faces/neck burn and donor site wounds, compared with standard care.

Results: Patient recruitment commenced in November 2018.  To date, 34 participants have been recruited. This study is being completed as part of a Masters thesis by publication and will conclude mid 2021.

Discussion: The outcomes from this research could present a new opportunity for the earlier commencement of scar management in healing wounds and allow the continued use of silicone-based scar management in the event of wound breakdown.  For patients, this has the potential of a faster return to activities of daily living and improved quality of life.


Fiona Poelchow is a Senior Occupational Therapist with over 20 years of clinical experience.  She has worked in the State Adult Burns Unit of Western Australia for the last 13 years and has recently undertaken a research project on the use of topical silicone in wound care.

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