Chronic wounds affect approximately 6.7 million people in the United States and the incidence is expected to rise at a rate of two percent annually over the next decade. An aging population and increasing rates of diseases and conditions such as diabetes, obesity and the late effects of radiation therapy contribute to the chronic wound epidemic.
That’s why Fisher-Titus will soon be offering Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT), a painless treatment employed to heal problem wounds. Now this advanced technology is coming to Fisher-Titus. Beginning this spring, this advance technology will be among the treatment options offered at the Fisher-Titus Center for Wound Healing.
HBOT sessions, which last about two hours, occur in a transparent chamber containing 100 percent oxygen. The treatments increase your blood’s ability to carry the pure oxygen to wound tissue and enhance white blood cell activity to heal a wound faster and fight infection better.
“We continuously look at ways to heal more of our patients’ chronic wounds faster, and hyperbarics are a leading method to achieve that,” said Ty Pannell, Program Director of the Center for Wound Healing. “Two new HBOT mono-chamber units were installed at Fisher-Titus in January and our plan is to begin treating patients using this technology beginning in the spring.”
Most problem wound patients receive between 30 and 40 treatments. HBOT treats a variety of conditions including diabetes-related wounds of the lower extremity, chronic bone infections, radiation injury and compromised skin grafts.
Since the Center for Wound Healing opened in 2009, its team has worked to educate people—especially those with diabetes—about early treatment of chronic wounds.
“Studies show a five-year mortality rate of 50 percent for someone losing a limb,” said Dr. Marc Dolce, co-medical director of the Fisher-Titus Center for Wound Healing. “So with diabetes and diabetic wounds at epidemic proportions in our community, our goal is to save limbs.”
To achieve that goal, patients susceptible to chronic wounds must recognize the seriousness of their risk.
“The most common wounds we treat are venous stasis ulcers, with diabetic wounds at number two,” reports Heather Williams, BSN, RN, WCC, Clinical Nurse Manager at the Center for Wound Healing. “Over half of our patients are diabetics who experience delayed wound healing.”
The Center employs a range of wound therapies, which will soon include state-of-the-art HBOT.
“In our new clinic space at Fisher-Titus, we continue to expand our advanced wound care modalities to find new ways to heal people in the rural community we serve,” said Dr. Farid Said, co-medical director of the Center for Wound Healing.
If you are concerned about a wound that has not healed, schedule an appointment with the specialists at the Center for Wound Healing. Call 419-660-6980 or visit fishertitus.org/wound.