Plasters : Types of Plasters

Plasters are a kind of adhesive bandage made from bleached cotton fabrics. An adhesive compound is spread on one side of the bandage to make it stick to the skin. Plasters may be either medicated or unmedicated. Some common plasters include the following:

Rubber Adhesive Plaster:

This is a bleached cotton fabric of prescribed standard, prepared with an adhesive compound spread on one side and waterproofed with rubber on the other side.

Zinc Oxide Plaster:

This is similar to Rubber adhesive plaster, but medicated with 20 to 30 percent of zinc oxide added to the adhesive compound.

Elastic Adhesive Plaster:

This consists of medicated elastic cotton fabric, spread with an adhesive compound, which contains 20 to 30 percent of Zinc oxide.

Plaster of Paris Bandage:

This is also medicated cotton fabric plaster, rendered adherent to the skin by a suitable adhesive. This bandage is impregnated with at least 80 · percent of exsiccated calcium sulphate.

However, for general purposes all these surgical dressings are divided into six main categories according to their uses. These categories are further subdivided into sections, which include materials having a similar type of construction, as follows:


  • Fabric  Absorbents
  • Fibrous Absorbents
  • Combined Fabric and Fibrous Absorbents
  • Medicated Absorbents

Wound Dressing

  • Wound Dressing Pads
  • Non-adherent Wound-contact Dressings
  • Standard Dressings
  • Other Wound Dressings


  • Retention Bandages
  • Non-adhesive Support and Compression Bandages
  • Adhesive Support and Compression Bandages
  • Medicated Bandages

Surgical Adhesive Tapes

  • Woven Tapes
  • Non-woven Tapes
  • Plastic Film Tapes
  • Non-stitch Adhesive Sutures
  • Protectives


  • Unmedicated Plasters
  • Medicated Plasters

Out of these the Standard Dressings have been briefly described below.

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