Terre Pruitt's Blog

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Archive for January 16th, 2014

The Incredible, Amazing Skin

Posted by terrepruitt on January 16, 2014

Whoa.  I have a Twitter account and I follow a lot of Nia people, of course.  The other day one of them, Jennifer Hicks post a link to a fact sheet about skin.  Many of the things I knew such as skin is the largest organ of the human body, the three layers of skin, feet have the thickest layer, over 50% of the dust in homes is dead skin (ewwww!) and some others.  But I don’t think I knew about each hair having a muscle.  It makes sense because how else could it “stand on its end” if it didn’t have a muscle to help it stand?  And ear wax is actually produced by a type of sweat gland . . . did you know that?  Everyone has the same number of melanocytes.  Melanocytes are the cells that produce melanin and melanin is the protein that gives skin its color.  Wow!  So since everyone has the same number it is the activity of the melanocytes not the quantity that determines skin color.  You can see the information for yourself on the Elephant Journal’s website, click here.  What REALLY fascinated me was the “skin replacement”.

When I read that I thought, “What?  Replace your skin?”  So, of course I had to look it up.  Then I thought, “Ohhhhhhh!  I get it.”  It is amazing.  Sometimes I don’t think about some of the stuff that needs to be done.  And let me tell you, I am grateful for not having to know.  But if you have a need for skin it makes sense and this sounds really cool.  Well, cool once you get over the “gross factor” and the “sad factor”.  But this “replacement skin” is actually considered a “wound care device”.  So this company called INTEGRA makes the INTEGRA™ Bilayer Matrix Wound Dressing which can help with severe wounds.

The product acts like skin so the wound has a better chance of healing without infection by blocking bacteria and helping control ” water vapor loss”.  Wounds including: abrasions, lacerations, second-degree burns, and skin tears.  It allows the skin to breath and move, as your real actual skin does.  It is made up of two layers, one is silicon and the other is collagen and glycosaminoglycan.  The silicon layer is removed after about 21 days of healing.  Then the other layer is expected to help provide a structure for the body to build onto, so that layer gets absorbed into the body.  Which for me – at this point, having no wounds needing something like this – is a bit icky as it is bovine collagen and sugars.  But I am certain if I needed something to help a serious wound heal, I probably would tell myself it was like eating a steak.

But anyway . . . this interested me and intrigued me.  It also helps remind me of how incredible our skin is.  I mean there are 50 facts that Catherine Beekmans shared with us/reminded us of, but then also that it can heal from such deep and/or severe wounds such as those that would require something like the product mentioned here.  I am sure many of you know of this product or others like it, but sometimes I am happy I don’t know these things.  I am happy I have never had an occasion to be introduced to this type of thing.  But then again when I do learn about it, I am just amazed.

What about you?  How many of the 50 Skin Facts did you know?  What about this “replacement skin”, do you think it is amazing?

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