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Br J Plast Surg. 2000 Sep;53(6):503-7.

Effects of silicone gel sheet on the stratum corneum hydration.

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  • 1Department of Dermatology, Tohoku University School of Medicine, Sendai, Japan.


Various groups have reported the efficacy of treatment with topical silicone gel sheet (SGS) for keloids and hypertrophic scars. Because its hydrating effect on the stratum corneum (SC) has been suggested as a mechanism underlying its therapeutic effectiveness, we evaluated it by comparing it with simple plastic film occlusion. With biophysical instruments we assessed the water content of the skin surface as well as its water evaporation on the flexor aspects of bilateral forearms of 10 healthy volunteers for 30min after removal of dressings of SGS or a plastic film that were applied either for 1 day or for 7 days. Occlusion with SGS or plastic film induced hydration of the skin surface, which was followed by an initial quick and later slow process of dehydration when the skin was exposed to the ambient atmosphere. The magnitude of the increase in hydration induced by SGS was always smaller than that of the plastic film occlusion and, unlike the latter treatment, hydration became less with repetition of SGS treatment. On day 7, the SC hydration quickly reduced to the level of non-treated control skin after removal of the dressings. An in vivo test demonstrated that the water-holding capacity of the SC normalised after 7 days of SGS treatment. SGS probably produces a favourable condition for the skin by protecting it from various environmental stimuli, while keeping the SC in an adequately but not over-hydrated condition.

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