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Help for Wounds That Won’t Heal

Many Douglas County patients who are among the 8 million Americans living with chronic, non-healing wounds have found relief through treatment at CHI Mercy’s Center for Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Therapy.

The Wound Center serves patients with “non-healing” wounds, defined as those that haven’t healed after 30 days, according to the center’s director and registered nurse Misty Jungling. Here, patients with wounds from a wide range of accidents or conditions have access to state-of-the-art technology and specially trained staff who work closely with patients’ physicians, surgeons and other providers to achieve the goal of healing patients within 14 weeks.

“We see a lot of post-surgical patients, burn victims and a lot of people experiencing complications from diabetes,” Jungling says. “About 80 percent of the wounds we see are related to venous insufficiency (malfunctioning vein valves that can cause leg ulcers and other issues).”

Patients begin the healing process with a 90-minute to two-hour initial meeting in which staff educate themselves about the patient’s condition and history, their lifestyle and more and in turn educate the patient about “what is going on with their wound, why it’s not healing and what we can do to get it to heal,” Jungling says.

Treatment can take a variety of forms, from compression therapy and wound dressings to bio-engineered skin grafting and hyperbaric oxygen therapy, which, says Jungling, “helps the body’s oxygen-dependent, wound-healing mechanisms function more efficiently.”

Likely candidates for treatment at CHI Mercy’s Center for Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Therapy include people with the following conditions:

  • Diabetic ulcers
  • Neuropathic ulcers
  • Pressure ulcers
  • Ischemic ulcers
  • Venous ulcers
  • Traumatic wounds
  • Surgical wounds
  • Vasculitis
  • Burns
  • Other chronic, non-healing wounds

While most patients of Mercy’s Center for Wound Healing are referred by their physicians, self-referrals are also accepted.  For more information, call 541.677.4501.