Wound care center in Port St. Lucie
The St. Lucie Medical Center Advanced Wound Center is dedicated to providing high-quality care to patients with chronic, non-healing wounds. Our center is staffed by a multidisciplinary team of physicians, nurses and therapists with extensive experience in treating and healing wounds that have resisted healing despite continued traditional treatment.
If you have a wound that has not begun to heal or has hardly improved after a month or more, come see the experts at our Advanced Wound Center.
To make an appointment at St. Lucie Medical Center Advanced Wound Center, please call us at (772) 398-3609.
Types of wounds we treat
At the Advanced Wound Center, we treat all types of chronic, serious wounds, including:
- Pressure ulcers (also called bedsores, results from prolonged pressure in the same area)
- Diabetic/neuropathic ulcers (ulcer commonly found in diabetic patients experiencing neuropathy)
- Venous insufficiency ulcers (results from damage to the veins)
- Arterial ulcers (also called ischemic ulcers, results from damage to the arteries)
- Surgical wounds
- Traumatic injuries
- Minor burns
- Radiation injuries (damage to underlying body tissue due to excess radiation exposure)
Wound management options
We offer an array of advanced treatment options for chronic wounds. Your treatment will be based on your initial evaluation and may include the following:
- Debridement (removal of dead or nonviable tissue)
- Advanced dressings (including dressings designed to prevent bacterial growth, manage wound secretions and promote cellular regrowth)
- Bio-engineered tissue used for growth factor therapy (the use of skin substitutes to aid in healing)
- Lymphedema therapy (lymphedema, swelling in the extremities, can cause an increased risk for chronic wounds)
- Hyperbaric oxygen therapy
- Compression therapy
- Wound cultures to identify infection
- Diabetes education
- Medical nutrition therapy
- Education for patients and caregivers regarding care between visits to the Advanced Wound Center
Pain is assessed during each visit, whether it is related to the wound(s) or not. Topical or injectable anesthetics are used before procedures that may cause pain. Your physician may recommend a prescription for wound-related pain depending on your needs.
What is hyperbaric oxygen therapy?
The St. Lucie Medical Center Advanced Wound Center proudly offers patients access to our hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) program. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a medical treatment in which a patient breathes 100 percent oxygen while in a specialized hyperbaric chamber. The purpose of breathing 100 percent oxygen in a pressurized atmosphere is to dissolve more oxygen in the patient’s blood to deliver more oxygen to those tissues having trouble healing.
HBOT is performed by our specially trained hyperbaric oxygen therapy technicians and is supervised by physicians specializing in hyperbaric medicine. Currently, our facility boasts two mono-place hyperbaric oxygen chambers. Mono-place chambers are designed to treat one patient at a time in each chamber.
Conditions treated with HBOT
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a viable treatment for many types of chronic, non-healing wounds, including:
- Diabetic wounds that are slow-healing or non-healing
- Radiation wounds resulting from damaged tissue
- Skin grafts that have potential problems with blood supply
- Infections of the bone and skin
- Chronic wounds that have not shown improvement in four weeks or more
HBOT treatment process
When you arrive for treatment in one of our hyperbaric chambers, you will be asked to change into 100 percent cotton scrubs and educated on safety measure and risk factors before treatment begins. You hyperbaric medicine physician will perform a quick assessment before you enter the hyperbaric chamber.
The only sensation you will experience is during the beginning (compression) phase of the treatment. The slowly increasing pressure will push on your eardrum and give you the same feeling you would experience when landing in an airplane or diving to the bottom of a swimming pool. The hyperbaric technician will instruct you on the different methods of relieving this ear pressure.
Treatment times typically last two hours. Patients are able to listen to music or watch a video during treatment.
Referrals for wound care
Most of the patients at our Advanced Wound Center are referred by his or her primary care physician. Although, patients are able to self refer themselves for treatment. We maintain strong communication with your primary care doctor during your treatment to maintain the continuity of care.
For more information about referrals, please call the Advanced Wound Center Directly at (772) 398-3609.
What to expect at the wound care center
When you call for an initial appointment, you will be asked a few questions about your wound(s) and general health. You will also be asked to provide insurance information so we can pre-register you for the appointment, so have your health insurance card(s) available.
Some health insurance providers require the patient to have a referral from his or her primary care physician and/or pre-authorization for wound care visits. This will be discussed with you during the pre-registration process. Our office staff will be able to assist with any authorizations required for the initial and subsequent visits.
Please prepare and bring the following with you to your first appointment:
- Make a list of all medications you are taking (including over-the-counter medications like aspirin and vitamins).
- Make a list of any allergies you have.
- Bring copies of any medical records.
- Bring your health insurance card(s) and photo identification with you.
- If you have diabetes, you may bring snack food and medication with you.
Arrive on time for your appointment. You will be asked to complete a questionnaire about your medical history prior to being seen by the physician. Your initial visit will take longer to allow for a full assessment. Please schedule transportation and other appointments to allow for this.
Initial wound assessment
Your initial assessment includes identification of the barriers to wound healing. These barriers may include, but are not limited to:
- Nutritional issues
- Decreased blood flow
- Repeated trauma
- Presence of necrotic (dead) tissue
- Other medical problems
We may request information from your primary care provider, such as a patient history, most recent physical, relevant office visit notes and results of previous laboratory and diagnostic tests. Based on your assessment, your physician at the Advanced Wound Center may order further testing to diagnose and treat your wound(s).
We have three primary goals that will be explained at your first visit, including:
- Educating you about obstacles to healing
- Teaching correct wound dressing and protection
- Preventing future non-healing wounds
Your insurance co-payments will be collected at the time of each visit. Arrangements would need to be made with our registration staff for any other payment options.