HealthWatch: Hyperbaric oxygen therapy

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Green Bay (WFRV) Hyperbaric oxygen therapy involves exposing the body to 100 percent oxygen at a pressure that is greater than what you normally experience.  Wounds need oxygen to heal properly, so the treatment, in many cases, can speed the healing process.
 
Due to poor circulation and sugar control, diabetics can have a difficult time healing.  When it comes to diabetic ulcers of the foot there is a 70-percent chance of amputation if the wound doesn’t heal.  Hyperbaric oxygen therapy can help.
 
Brent Wisner has had 30 treatments in a hyperbaric chamber, “Awesome it’s probably the life, the foot saver,” said Brent Wisner, patient.
 
Complications from diabetes has caused a lot of damage to Brent’s feet. He had two toes amputated and that, in turn, caused an ulcer on his foot, “I have a deformed foot and it rolls to the outside where the ulcer formed,” explained Brent.
 
The ulcer wouldn’t heal, “And as I walk it kept breaking it open,” said Brent.
 
Having a big impact on his life, “I haven’t been able to do a whole lot of anything,” said Brent.
 
Brent tried many different treatments, “And it would work but a week- week and a half later I’m bleeding again,” said Brent.
 
So Brent turned to Dr. Roland Moreno a hyperbaric and wound specialist at Aurora BayCare Medical Center, “Because of the long standing effects of diabetes on blood vessels you get hardening of the arteries prevents adequate flow from something that normally should heal,” explained  Roland Moreno, MD, hyperbaric and wound specialist, Aurora BayCare Medical Center
 
And if it didn’t heal it could lead to further amputation, “They were so bad that I was concerned about infection down to the bone,” said Dr. Moreno.
 
Dr. Moreno suggested hyperbaric oxygen therapy, “Essentially the patient is in the chamber and they breathe in this pure oxygen at levels that are at 2 to 2 1/2 times normal atmospheric pressure,” said Dr. Moreno.
 
It allows oxygen to saturate the plasma so it goes further into the blood stream, “And the end effect is to induce what is called angiogenesis or new blood vessel growth and by getting those to sprout and grow that then delivers materials needed to grow skin,” said Dr. Moreno.
 
After four months, along with keeping his sugars in check, staying off his foot while in a cast and eating well, Brent is back on his feet, “I want to start exercising again which I haven’t been able to do,”
 
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is used in a variety of ailments including wounds, carbon monoxide poisoning and serious infections.
 
To learn more you can call AuroraBayCare at 866-938-0035 or email healthwatch@aurorabaycare.com. 

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