Q: if I had an idea for a shape of bandage using hydrocolloid composition for a specific condition, could it be patened?
A: The short answer is maybe.
The answer hinges on how close what you are proposing is to things already done or suggested by those of ordinary skill in the art of treating that condition or in making bandage products. While relevant prior art is not just patents and published patent applications, that is an easy place to start searching. You can look at http://bit.ly/Patent_Searching
for some tips on how to search patents.
In the end, you may want to speak to a patent attorney that does a lot of work with medical devices (I fall into this category). It may be prudent to augment your initial search with a search performed by professional searchers (often ex-PTO examiners). They provide the results of the search to the patent attorney and then you can decide if there is sufficient daylight between what you propose and the prior art that is easy to find for you to spend money to chase patent claims.
There may be some experimental bandage use in a PhD thesis for someone seeking a degree in biomedical engineering that we would not find with this reasonable and affordable search but it is the smart move. We cannot look under every rock before proceeding.
I hope that this helps.
Kevin E Flynn
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