Historical information

Surgical tape or medical tape is a type of pressure-sensitive adhesive tape used in medicine and first aid to hold a bandage or other dressing onto a wound. These tapes usually have a hypoallergenic adhesive which is designed to hold firmly onto skin, dressing materials, and underlying layers of tape, but to remove easily without damaging the skin. Surgical tape is often white because it contains zinc oxide, which is added to help prevent infections.

In 1845, Dr. Horace Day made the first crude surgical tape. It was created by combining India rubber, pine gum, turpentine, litharge (a yellow lead oxide), and turpentine extract of cayenne pepper and then applying that mixture to strips of fabric. It was the first “rubber-based” adhesive tape called Leukoplast for the German company Beiersdorf AG. Larger scale manufacturing of similar medical tapes began in 1874 by Robert Wood Johnson and George Seaburg in East Orange, NJ. (Johnson & Johnson Pty).
1921, Earle Dickson, who bought cotton for Johnson & Johnson, fixed a piece of gauze to some cloth backed tape and the first Band-Aid ® was invented.

Physical description

A roll of white adhesive surgical tape on a metal reel width 2cm

Inscriptions & markings

Symbol of a butterfly in centre