Wound Care for Complex and Non-Healing Wounds

Most wounds heal without intervention. The Center for Wound Healing at Retreat Doctors’ Hospital is devoted to patients who have complex, non-healing wounds.

Our comprehensive program combines modern technology with a team of highly-trained healthcare professionals, offering new hope to those suffering from chronic non-healing wounds, while providing physicians the freedom to coordinate care in the most effective manner for patients.

Our Services Include

Retreat Doctors' Hospital's Center for Wound Healing treats a wide range of chronic, recurrent, non-healing and acute wounds. Learn more about our specialized offering below.

We treat chronic, recurrent or non-healing wounds caused by a number of factors including:

  • Pressure ulcers
  • Burns
  • Diabetic foot ulcers
  • Tissue or bone infections
  • Crush injuries
  • Gas gangrene
  • Venous leg ulcers
  • Surgical complications
  • Radiation complications
  • Arterial ulcers

The Center for Wound Healing at Retreat Doctors' Hospital provides a comprehensive menu of services for all patients, including:

  • Wound and skin care program
  • Interdisciplinary team of healthcare professionals including physicians, nurses, home health providers, diabetic counselors, social workers and rehabilitation therapists
  • Intensive treatment from inpatient rehabilitation staff to maximize independence and mobility skills
  • Ongoing clinical research in healing mechanisms, treatments and technology
  • Prevention and education programs
  • Oversight by a medical director and staff with more than 100 years of research and clinical expertise in wound healing and plastic reconstructive surgery

Retreat Doctors' Hospital was the first in Central Virginia to offer hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT), one of the most advanced treatment options available for healing wounds.

HBOT is a typically outpatient treatment involving breathing pure oxygen for about two hours in a sealed, pressurized environment to help push oxygen into your blood plasma. This process enhances the ability of white blood cells to fight off infections, while simultaneously stimulating the growth of new blood vessels, and can restore normal oxygen metabolism to affected tissues. HBOT has also been shown to be effective for the treatment of carbon monoxide intoxication and “the bends," as well as being effective in fighting some types of infection.

Contact us at (804) 254-5403 to schedule a consultation and see if HBOT is right for you. You will be provided instructions and information about HBOT before your first treatment. You will need to inform the staff about any medications you are taking and be sure to ask if you have questions.

Decompression sickness (DCS) occurs when the body is exposed to a sudden drop in surrounding pressure, and is caused by the formation of gas bubbles in the blood and tissues. This event occurs as a result of:

  • Rising too quickly to the surface from deep sea scuba diving
  • A fast ascent into a high altitude from a low altitude
  • Sudden exit from a high pressure or hyperbaric chamber
  • Increased risk with increased depth of dive
  • Rising too quickly to the surface from deep sea scuba diving
  • Long duration of dive, or multiple dives in one day
  • Flying after diving
  • Diving in excessively cold water without proper protective gear

At normal altitudes, nitrogen and other gases are exhaled or dissolved in the blood and tissues. However, during severe changes in altitude and air pressure, nitrogen and other gases form gas bubbles. These bubbles block the flow of blood. If you experience any symptoms of DCS, immediate treatment is extremely important, as this condition can be fatal if not treated quickly.

DCS I is the less severe type of DCS. It primarily results in inflammation of muscles, joints, and tendons, resulting in pain and swelling. This is commonly referred to as “the bends.” Although pain may occur anywhere in the body, it is most common in or near an arm or leg joint. The pain may become more severe over time. Itching, skin mottling, weakness, and fatigue also occur. If you have DCS I, breathing 100% oxygen from a mask may be sufficient treatment. You should also be monitored carefully for other symptoms.

DCS II, the more severe type of DCS, results in more serious systemic effects, including neurological symptoms such as numbness and tingling. In the most severe form, numbness may lead to paralysis and even death. The treatment for DCS II is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy.

You can prevent DCS by:

  • Following standard diving guidelines, and limiting the depth and duration of deep sea dives
  • Avoiding diving if you are obese, pregnant, have heart or lung problems, or have had a recent joint or limb injury
  • Avoiding excessive alcohol consumption for 24 hours before diving
  • Avoiding flying for 24 hours after deep sea diving
  • Avoiding repeated dives within a 12-hour period
  • Taking ibuprofen to help prevent altitude sickness when hiking
  • Avoiding flights in nonpressurized aircraft
Most wound care treatments, including HBOT, are covered by Medicare and third-party payers and do not require a referral. If you're uncertain about whether your insurance will cover your wound care, we can help you find out.

Nationally-Recognized Care

The Center for Wound Healing at Retreat Doctors' Hospital is the only facility in Central Virginia accredited with distinction from the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society (UHMS). This recognition is given to programs that meet the most rigorous industry standards and practice evidence-based medicine.

A Coordinated, Team Approach

Using established protocols and the latest advancements, the teams at our Center for Wound Healing offers individualized plans and treatment options. Referring physicians maintain direct coordination of their patient’s care and will have access to our outstanding team of plastic surgeons, general surgeons, vascular surgeons, family practice and internal medicine physicians, endocrinologists, infectious disease specialists and orthopedic surgeons.

Clinical Research

Our physicians are at the forefront of research into new and advanced ways of treating wounds. From improved diagnostic treatment techniques to personalized therapeutic approaches, we are advancing the science of wound care. Participation in these clinical trials allows us to offer the latest treatment and technology to our patients. Call (804) 254-5403 for more information.