Who Could Be Affected by Chronic Wounds?
This week is Wound Care Awareness Week. Proper care and attention to wounds is critical because an untreated chronic wound can lead to serious skin infections that can eventually spread to the blood stream and cause sepsis.
You may be surprised to learn that chronic wounds cost about $50 billion per year to treat. Here are some additional wound facts you should know to help keep yourself and your loved ones healthy.
Someone You Know is Probably Affected
One in four families have a family member with a chronic wound. Open sores like this can cause mobility problems, especially affecting one’s ability to keep his or her doctor appointments.
Diabetes is one of the most common causes for chronic wounds. These wounds most often occur on the feet and are called foot ulcers. About 25% of those with diabetes will have a foot ulcer at some point. With diabetes, circulation and wound healing are both compromised.
Unfortunately, diabetes is a double-edged sword; a lack of circulation can cause wounds to develop, and those wounds are often chronic due to lack of circulation. Although standard wound care can help clear up many foot ulcers, sometimes more advanced wound care is required to achieve complete healing.
Who Else is Affected by Chronic Wounds
Diabetics aren’t the only patients who experience chronic wounds. We also treat cancer survivors, post-surgical wounds, military and police veterans, amputees, seniors, heart patients, and many more.
Although diabetes is one of the most common reasons for circulation issues that lead to chronic wounds, a lack of physical activity can also be a contributing factor. Patients who are elderly, have just had surgery, or are trying to recover from cardiac events are prone to chronic wounds due to the inability to stay active.
Chronic wounds can also develop if one’s immune system is compromised. This can occur in seniors as well as those who have undergone chemotherapy for cancer treatment. Without a healthy immune system, the body can’t fight off bacteria in the wound, which can lead to severe infections and sepsis.
Hyperbaric Oxygen Chambers for Wound Healing
West Suburban Medical Center at White Rock has partnered with Healogics, one of the country’s leading companies offering advanced wound healing technology. We are proud to offer two Healogics Hyperbaric Oxygen Chambers in our outpatient wound care clinic.
When the body is exposed to 100% oxygen at higher pressure, wounds receive a high concentration of oxygen. This helps to speed up the healing process so that patients can start living without the pain and danger of an open wound.
As you can see, there are many types of medical conditions and patients who can experience chronic wounds. At West Suburban Medical Center at White Rock, we care for your wounds like you’re a part of our family. Call our wound care clinic today so we can help you get the healing treatment that you deserve.