More Than Just a Scratch
Lingering wounds need special attention. The Wound Care and Hyperbaric Center at CHRISTUS Southeast Texas Health System specializes in getting rid of them once and for all.
On May 27, 2017, 41-year-old Demetrius Dukes was celebrating a beautiful spring day by hosting a crawfish boil in his backyard. The freshly mowed grass and warm weather encouraged many attendees, including Demetrius, to kick off their shoes for the afternoon. Everything was going well, until Demetrius took one wrong step and his bare foot was pinned to the ground. Demetrius had stepped on a seven-inch piece of rusted rebar — a type of ridged steel — that was embedded deep in his foot. He hurried to his local emergency room, where doctors removed the rebar, but the damage was already done, and an infection set in. When what should have been a straightforward wound wouldn’t heal, his doctors referred him to the Wound Care Center at CHRISTUS Southeast Texas Outpatient Center Mid County.
Healing and Education
The Wound Care and Hyperbaric Center specializes in treating complicated, non-healing and slow-healing wounds, such as diabetic ulcers, arterial ulcers, trauma wounds, burns, gangrene and surgical wounds. “Treating the wound is just one part of what we do here,” says Rebecca Ledford, CWCMS, CCMSCP, program administrator at the Wound Care and Hyperbaric Center at CHRISTUS Southeast Texas Outpatient Center Mid County. “We spend a lot of time educating our patients about how to manage their wounds at home and prevent additional injuries from taking place.”
Last year, the center added four new hyperbaric chambers, which the team uses to administer pressurized oxygen therapy to patients with hard-to-heal wounds. “These chambers are excellent for helping patients with diabetic wounds, trauma, gangrene, non-healing surgical wounds or carbon monoxide poisoning and anyone else who may experience poor healing,” Rebecca says. “This equipment, combined with our expertise, means many of our patients overcome wounds that they thought would be with them for the rest of their lives.”
On the Mend
After receiving skin grafts and working with the team at the Wound Care and Hyperbaric Center, Demetrius’ foot is finally back to the way it was before the accident. “My wife and I followed Rebecca’s instructions to a T,” Demetrius says. “As a result, my foot finally started to improve rather than get worse. I can’t thank the staff enough for all their hard work.”