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Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Center Opens

Arlington, VA (November 9, 2007) - Millions of Americans are newly diagnosed with diabetes or peripheral vascular disease annually. Similarly, a large number of them will develop wounds which fail to heal as a result. To offer a comprehensive treatment approach for patients with non-healing sores or wounds from these illnesses, the Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Center opened at Virginia Hospital Center on October 29, 2007.

"Opening the Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Center comes in response to requests from both patients and physicians to provide easy access to medical care in treating wounds associated with diabetes, peripheral arterial disease, radiation necrosis and lymphedema," said Mary A. Buesing, MD, the Center's Medical Director. "Patients will experience a 'one-stop shop' where they will be seen by a multi-specialty team of physicians dedicated to preserving their ability to walk and to improve overall quality of life."
The new Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Center at Virginia Hospital Center will be among three wound healing centers in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area and part of a new network of 400 facilities throughout the nation specializing in wound care.  The Center takes an interdisciplinary approach to wound healing, offering a staff of highly trained specialty physicians and nurses, with specialties in infectious disease, orthopedics, podiatry, and plastics and vascular surgery. But the specialty care doesn't end there: patients will also be counseled and treated by physical therapists, nutritionists, lymphedema specialists and diabetes educators.

Diabetes affects nearly 7 percent of the US population, or 21 million Americans, and is the leading cause of lower-limb amputation. As life expectancy continues to increase, more Americans will develop diabetes and/or other illnesses that affect the circulation such as peripheral vascular disease. The Center provides state-of-the-art advanced wound care to help decrease the chances of wounds resulting in limb loss or amputations from these conditions.

After a thorough assessment of underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, trauma, paralysis, and circulatory problems, each patient at the Center will receive an individualized plan of care designed to meet their specific needs. The advanced, evidence-based treatments available at the Center include bioengineered tissue, vacuum-assisted closure, debridement, muscle flaps, skin grafts, hyperbaric oxygen and advanced wound dressings.

"The Center provides truly coordinated care under one roof for a group of patients whose needs require specialized management," said Jeanne Maguire, RN, MSN, Chief Nursing Officer and Vice President for Patient Care Services at Virginia Hospital Center. "There are approximately 85,000 non-emergency amputations every year in the United States, and many of these could be prevented if more patients had access to a Center like this one. We are very proud to bring these services to the northern Virginia community."

The Wound Healing & Hyperbaric Center is located on the ground floor of Virginia Hospital Center's Women & Infant Health Building at 1701 N. George Mason Drive in Arlington.

About Virginia Hospital Center:
For over 60 years, Virginia Hospital Center has provided exceptional medical services to the Washington metropolitan area. Virginia Hospital Center's new $150 million state-of-the-art facility  offers comprehensive healthcare and multiple Centers of Excellence including Cardiology & Cardiovascular Surgery, Neuroscience, Oncology, Women & Infant Health and Urology. Growing service lines include Executive Health and the only Lung Cancer Center in Northern Virginia. Virginia Hospital Center is a teaching hospital, long-associated with Georgetown University's School of Medicine, and accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) and Licensed by the Commonwealth of Virginia Department of Health.  For additional information, please visit www.virginiahospitalcenter.com.


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