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Stephanie Colucci – Wound Care Success Story

Healing beautifully – Stephanie Colucci, Wound Care, and Hyperbaric Center success story

Having three autoimmune diseases had taken a toll on Stephanie Colucci's body.

Because of complications from lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and scleroderma, she's had to endure an amputation of her right leg below the knee and surgery on her left foot.

"It looked like I would lose my left foot, as well, but Dr. Ali and the wound care team at Methodist Charlton were able to save my foot," she says. Colucci says she met Basit Ali, DO, an independently practicing wound care specialist on the medical staff at Methodist Charlton Medical Center in Dallas, Texas, when he cared for the open wound on her left foot after a previous surgery.

"Dr. Ali was there every step of the way, cleaning and caring for the wound while I was in the hospital," she says.

Stephanie ColucciNo giving up

After she was released from the hospital, Colucci continued treatment through the hospital's Wound Care and Hyperbaric Center with a month of hyperbaric oxygen therapy sessions. During the sessions, a patient lies in a chamber filled with pure oxygen, which facilitates the growth of healthy tissue to heal wounds.

Did she mind being in the enclosed chamber? "Not at all," Colucci says. "It was actually very peaceful and relaxing. I could lie inside and watch TV or listen to music."

To heal the wound completely, Dr. Ali had to apply a variety of treatments, including V.A.C.® (vacuum-assisted closure) therapy, which uses negative pressure to vacuum impurities from the wound and stimulates tissue growth.

"I can't say enough about how well I was treated by Dr. Ali and the wound care staff," Colucci says. "When one treatment stopped working, we would try something else. When the wound threw him a curve ball, he would hit every one. He is exceptional."

Colucci says she also found the wound care staff to be patient and compassionate.

"They were always willing to sit down, talk with you, ask how you were doing, and answer your questions," she says. "They became like family."

As for the wound, it's a thing of the past.

"All the doctors who have seen the wound are impressed," she says. "It healed beautifully."

From the spring 2012 edition of Shine magazine