Many of the choices for managing split-thickness skin graft donor sites are satisfactory, but none is ideal. Epidermal regeneration in a donor site is readily available for clinical study. We have reviewed experimental studies of epidermal regeneration and applied those results to the clinical study of a new donor site dressing. This dressing is a vapor-permeable, transparent, polyurethane film with a polyvinyl ether adhesive. Used on 100 patients, it was found to be safe and effective in allowing rapid and painless healing. Although the dressing is occlusive and theoretically could promote infection in a contaminated wound, no infections were encountered. Comparison was made with 35 patients managed by other methods. No marked difference in healing time was noted clinically. The striking advantage of the new dressing was painless healing.