Helping Those With Stubborn Wounds
By Phil Hartman, Daily Gazette, Sterling, Ill.
Jul. 21–STERLING — The door to the chamber closed, and a hissing sound filled the brightly colored room at the touch of a button.
One of the two hyperbaric oxygen chambers at CGH Medical Center’s Wound Healing Center, 1809 N. Locust St., Sterling, was being displayed Sunday at an open house.
Formerly a site for physical therapy, speech, hearing and occupational medicine, the facility opened as a wound treatment center on Jan. 14, said Peggy Short, the facility’s program director.
“Most patients don’t think of wounds, they think of sores,” Short said of the kind of injuries the center helps treat.
Instead of an injury such as a gunshot or knife wound, the center’s various technologies are used to help treat wounds such as a sore or ulcer that won’t heal because of poor circulation or other reasons.
The increased pressure in hyperbaric oxygen chambers helps increase the oxygen content in blood, and how far oxygen moves into tissue. Among the positive effects the treatment has is an increase in the number of red blood cells, said Chelsey Vetter, a hyperbaric technician at the center.
The center also offers standard wound care, such as topical treatments, casts and dressings, and has a lift for patients in wheelchairs.
“It’s rare to find a facility like this in a community this size. Usually people have to travel to Davenport, Iowa or Rockford,” said Dr. Hussein Zaioor. He and Dr. Nazeer Raheem are the two doctors at the facility.
The staff also includes two wound-care certified nurses, two hyperbaric oxygen therapy techs, a receptionist and Short.
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