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Medicated bandages.

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VOL: 102, ISSUE: 25, PAGE NO: 33

Generic and proprietary names

- Calaband.

- Ichthopaste.

- Icthaband.

- Quinaband.

- Steripaste.

- Viscopaste PB7.

- Zinc paste and calamine.

- Zinc paste and coal tar bandage.

- Zinc paste and ichthammol.

- Zinc paste bandage.

- Zinc paste, calamine and clioquinol.

- Zincaband.

- Zipzoc.


- They have mild astringent and antiseptic properties.


- Wound dressings.


- Management of leg ulcers.

- Some paste bandages are also indicated for use in the management of chronic eczema/dermatitis where occlusion is indicated.


- Allergy to an ingredient.


- The skin of patients who have a leg ulcer is easily sensitised to topical agents such as preservatives in medicated bandages. Caution should be exercised in any patient in whom there is deterioration of the surrounding skin as this could be due to sensitivity.

Common side-effects

- Sensitivity, mainly to the preservatives.

- May produce local allergic reactions and produce altered skin pigmentation.


- Bandage.

- Stocking.

Application (for legs)

- Bandaging should be commenced at the base of the toes passing around the heel and back across the dorsum of the foot.

- The bandage should then be cut and the process repeated to give adequate coverage of the heel.

- A final turn is taken around the foot and onto the ankle.

- A fold is formed behind the malleolus and bandaging commenced in the opposite direction, folding and reversing to avoid encircling turns.

- Make one-and-a-half turns, fold back and repeat until the bandage reaches the tibial tubercle and is slightly higher at the back.

- Tucks and folds over bony prominences should be avoided.

- A crepe or other compression bandage should then be applied to provide elastic support, retain moisture and keep in position.

Nursing considerations

- A zinc paste bandage remains one of the standard treatments for leg ulcers and can be left on undisturbed for up to a week.

- Where venous insufficiency exists some paste bandages may be used under graduated compression bandaging. However, careful assessment to exclude arterial disease must first be undertaken by an experienced practitioner.

- Zinc paste bandages are also used with coal tar or ichthammol in chronic lichenified skin conditions such as chronic eczema.

- They are also used with calamine in milder eczematous skin conditions.

Patient teaching

- Inform patients that the bandage does not dry to a shell but remains pliable.

- Dressing changes are normally at weekly intervals, so patients will need to consider how to attend to their hygiene needs while keeping the dressing intact.

Nurses should refer to manufacturer’s summary of product characteristics and to appropriate local guidelines

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