For those with chronic venous ulcers, treatment can be time-consuming, costly, and inconvenient. Michael Pruett knows that cycle well.
For the last couple of years, he has dealt with chronic venous ulcers – wounds on his legs that refused to heal in a timely fashion. He would travel to a hospital near his Missouri home and receive treatment, only to return within a few short weeks. A move back to his wife’s hometown of Greensburg changed all that as he began working with the Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Center at Decatur County Memorial Hospital.
“I didn’t have much hope of anything different. I told them I’d see them in a couple of weeks after my first round of treatments,” he said. “But that didn’t happen.”
Pruett, who retired from the group insurance industry, gives much of the credit to a compression garment called a circaid®. The double-velcro wrap, non-elastic material allows him to adjust the wrap to the right amount of pressure and has kept his recovery on track.
In addition, he has undergone lymphedema treatments including manual massage and a mechanical lymphedema pump. Both massage and the mechanical pump mimic the physiological and anatomic principles of the lymphatic system and directs the fluid from swollen areas to functioning lymphatic areas. Adding the lymphatic pump to Pruett’s treatment plan bolstered his success rate. Because his insurance did not cover this costly treatment, a grant from the Hospital Foundation of Decatur County and a generous donation of the lymphedema pump from Biotab facilitated success.
But, according to DCMH wound care specialist Amy Clason, much of the credit goes to Pruett. “It really takes dedication on the part of the patient to follow the protocols we recommend,” she says. “He is doing exactly what he needs to be doing to stay healthy and avoid additional treatments.”
The DCMH Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Center specializes in the treatment of problem wounds. The Center is an outpatient, hospital-based service that works in conjunction with the patient’s primary care physician and specializes in the treatment of chronic wounds. The wound center uses an evidence-based practice approach to treating chronic wounds and is the first provider in Southeastern Indiana to offer Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) as an adjunctive treatment for problematic, non-healing wounds that meet specific criteria. HBOT delivers 100% oxygen under increased atmospheric pressure to facilitate the healing of certain types of wounds and aides in limb salvage for patients who may be at risk of amputation. It is not for everyone, or every type of wound, but for those 10-20% of patients who qualify for hyperbaric therapy, the center does see increased rates of healing.
For more information about the types of wounds that the Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Center treats, call 812-222-HEAL (4325).