Wound Care and Hyperbaric Services at Fort Walton Beach Medical Center
Wound Care Services at Fort Walton Beach Medical Center offers wound specialists that can assist with the diagnosis and treatment of even the most difficult to heal wounds. Our physician-directed Wound Care Center offers special treatment for wounds that have not healed, including diabetic ulcers, vascular wounds, wounds resulting from trauma, post-surgical wounds and dog and spider bites. Specially trained physicians and nurses use the latest therapeutic procedures to help heal chronic wounds and sores that have resisted other forms of treatment.
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy
Fort Walton Beach Medical Center is now offering Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy as a part of treatment provided in the Wound Care Center. Our staff, which includes a General Surgeon, Plastic Surgeon, Vascular Surgeon, a certified Wound Care Nurse, and two Hyperbaric Technicians, has received specialized training in advanced wound care and hyperbaric medicine and are devoted to healing your wounds.
What type of wounds or conditions do we treat?
We treat all types of wounds including:
- Air or Gas Embolism
- Arterial Ulcers
- Crush and Trauma Injuries
- Decompression Sickness
- Diabetic Wounds
- Gangrene: Wet or Dry
- Neuropathic Ulcers
- Ostomy Care
- Other Problem-Healing Wounds of Unknown Etiology
- Pressure Ulcers
- Surgical Wounds
- Thermal/Chemical Burns
- Venous Stasis Ulcers
Patients referred to the Wound Care Center at FWBMC will receive a comprehensive evaluation by one of our medical staff physicians. After condition specific diagnostic testing is conducted, a variety of treatment options are employed to meet the patient’s need. The Center’s staff members will coordinate wound services with the Primary Care Provider and initiate condition specific referrals to other appropriate community resources (i.e., physician specialists, lymphedema, diabetic education/nutrition, orthotics, physical therapy, home health, and durable medical equipment.)
How Does Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Work?
In some cases, the healing of wounds can be assisted by hyperbaric oxygen therapy, “hyper" meaning increased and "baric" relating to pressure. In order to provide patients with hyperbaric oxygen therapy, a pressurized chamber is necessary. The patient is placed within the chamber, which is then compressed to the level ordered by the consulting hyperbaric physician, using pure oxygen.
Hyperbaric oxygen is a simple concept. The air we breathe contains 21 percent oxygen. Providing 100 percent oxygen by face mask without the use of a chamber has certain limited benefits. By providing pure oxygen in a pressurized chamber, we are able to deliver two to three times that which can be provided by breathing 100 percent oxygen with no increase in pressure. This “hyperbaric” dose of oxygen offers distinct therapeutic benefits. Increased pressure, combined with an increase in oxygen to 100 percent, dissolves oxygen in the blood plasma and in all body cells; the increase in oxygenation increases the wound healing process and with the proper regiment of treatments have been proven to have positive results in healing difficult wounds.
What Are the Benefits to Patients?
Oxygen, when delivered to a patient in a hyperbaric chamber, greatly increases the amount of oxygen that can be delivered to body tissue by the blood. All of the benefits provided by hyperbaric oxygen therapy are the result of this extra oxygen within the chamber in direct contact with wounds. This is the reason that your dressings are usually left in place during the treatment. Depending upon the reason for your referral to the Hyperbaric Medicine Service, hyperbaric oxygen will be used to provide you with one or more of the following effects:
- Increased oxygen delivery to the injured tissue
- Greater blood vessel formation
- Advanced wound healing
- Improved infection control
- Preservation of damaged tissues
- Elimination of toxic substances
- Reduced effects from toxic substances
- Reduction or elimination of tissue obstruction by gas bubbles
Our staff is always available to answer any questions you may have when it comes to wound care and hyperbaric treatment. For more information about our services, please call (850) 863-7566.
View the Wound Care & Hyperbaric Referral Form (PDF - 113 KB)