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How to Use Calcium Alginate Dressings


Calcium Alginate Dressings are used in advanced wound care for the management of highly draining wounds. The fibers of Calcium Alginate are derived from seaweed and swell in response to moisture, transforming into a gel-like material that promote moisture balance, keep wounds clean, and facilitates natural healing. 


What is a Calcium Alginate Dressing?

Calcium alginate dressings are non-woven, absorbent dressings made from seaweed. These dressings can hold up to 20 times their weight and are ideal for wounds with moderate to large amounts of drainage.

When the calcium and sodium fibers come into contact with wound drainage, the dressing transforms into a gel consistency that conforms to the shape of the wound bed. This action promotes wound healing by filling “dead space” within the wound and maintaining a moist environment that is optimal for healing.


Calcium Alginate Healing Action

Alginate dressings are non-occlusive and non-adherent, allowing for gas and heat exchange at the wound surface while also minimizing trauma and discomfort with dressing changes


Advantages of Calcium Alginate Dressings

  • absorb moderate to large amounts of drainage
  • reduce risk of infection by lowering bacterial burden and absorbing debris
  • maintain moist environment for natural healing (autolytic debridement)
  • non-adherent, resulting in less pain with removal
  • appropriate for infected or tunneling wounds
  • hemostatic properties, help to stop bleeding
  • versatile, can be combined with many other topical agents (i.e. Santyl, Medihoney)
  • non-occlusive, allow gas exchange across surface of wound
  • some alginate dressings contain silver, a powerful infection-fighting antimicrobial agent


How to Apply Calcium Alginate Dressings




When Should Calcium Alginate Dressings Be Used?

  • wounds with moderate to heavy drainage
  • bed sores/pressure ulcers
  • venous stasis ulcers
  • wounds with tunneling/undermining
  • infected wounds
  • wounds with irregular shape
  • traumatic wounds and skin tears
  • incisions and dehisced wounds


Considerations for Alginate Dressings

  • not indicated for dry or minimally draining wounds
  • may be cut to fit size of wound bed to protect healthy tissue surrounding wound




Our Calcium Alginate Dressings come in 2×2 and 4×5 inch sheets, as well as 12″ rope. Our dressings are value priced for wounds requiring multiple dressing changes. 

FREE 3-5 day FedEx Home Delivery All Orders Over $75


Have you tried calcium alginate dressings yet? Let us know what you think or ask any questions in the comments below!