PIETER’S PROGRESS: The Healing Touch
Brought to you by Meritus Health
I was a clumsy child. If you need proof, just count the scars on my body.
There’s the one on my knee, the other just above my right eye. Oh, and the giant scar on my right hand from when I got eleven stitches after tripping in kindergarten.
It turns out if I received the same injury today, there’s a good chance I would’ve ended up in the care of Dr. Thomas Gilbert.
He is the medical director of the Meritus Wound Center which is located on the first floor of Meritus Medical Center. There’s a giant Baltimore Ravens banner in his office, and he’ll gladly brag about their Super Bowl wins if you ask him.
But these days he is smiling about something else. The Wound Center recently received accreditation with distinction from the Undersea & Hyberbaric Medical Society.
That makes sense when you take a tour of the Wound Center and see the room that is filled with hyperbaric chambers. They’re giant glass cylinders that have beds inside them (and a convenient television on top).
It’s the fastest way for doctors to flood a patient with the healing power of oxygen. And when you have a serious wound on your body, that is one of the best ways to heal it.
Most of the Center’s patients have chronic wounds, such as diabetic ulcers. Sometimes it’s even more traumatic, like the young girl who had part of her nose bitten off by a dog four years ago.
She spent nearly two dozen sessions in the hyperbaric chambers, each one lasting more than two hours. She told her friends it was like riding in a submarine or a rocket.
The average time to heal a wound at Meritus Wound Center is 46 days, which is three weeks faster than the national average.
Dr. Gilbert credits his staff and their dedication to quick, state-of-the-art care. He’s been around wounds most of his life, first as a member of the military than as an emergency doctor.
His favorite part of the job is getting to know the patients and helping them feel better about themselves.
“Patients with wounds on their arms or legs often feel self-conscious in public which makes simple things like summer picnics and family vacations uncomfortable for them,” Gilbert said. “The goal of our staff is to help those patients heal quickly so they can lead all around happier, healthier lives.”
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