SUNNYSIDE, WA - Getting wounds treated properly and at the right time can be essential for patients with diabetes.
Recently with the help of special treatment doctors in Sunnyside were able to help someone who would have needed an amputation.
"We have a large population of diabetics and we didn't previously have a Wound Care Center. Our administration specifically Brian Gibbons was adamant that he wanted one at this hospital. We opened one about a year and a half ago and in our first six months we tripled our volume in terms of helping patients heal their wounds," Dr. Tracy Berg, Medical Director, Wound Care Center at Astria Sunnyside.
In the last year Dr. Berg says the center doubled it's patient volume, simply showing how much of a necessity the center is in a largely diabetic area.
For patients with severe wounds where amputation would be considered Dr. Berg says the center offers Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) treatment.
"It is a huge assist in getting bone infections particularly in diabetic feet to heal without removing the bone which often requires removing the limb," said Dr. Berg.
The treatment it's self consists of patients lying in chambers where oxygen levels are controlled.
Recently a patient received the HBOT treatment and like him most patients are thankful the hospital offers this type of treatment because it really does provide the best results.
"We have a nine step program that on average will get wounds healed within the first 12 weeks, and a lot of patients are just so relieved to be here that, because they have previously been told there's nothing else to do expect for remove the affected wound and or limb," said Dr. Berg.
The patient that recently received the HBOT treatment was in danger of losing his foot because when he arrived to the emergency room the infection was so deep it had reached the bone, luckily the treatment worked and he did not have to go through any of that.