Monday, July 12, 2010

KCI Wound VAC Revolutionizes Wound Care in Haiti

The benefits of V.A.C.® (Vacuum Assisted Closure®) Therapy, also known as NPWT (Negative Pressure Wound Therapy) are widely known. This relatively new technology became available in the United States the 1990's and has revolutionized the way we do wound care. Now this technology has arrived at Hopital Adventiste d'Haiti where we have one of the busiest orthopaedic and reconstructive services in the city of Port au Prince. We thank KCI for their generous donation of 10 VAC devices and the accompanying disposables. Our goal is to provide top quality care to the patients we serve and this donation brings a major advancement to the treatment of the many chronic wounds and bone infections that we are seeing due to the Jan 12 earthquake as well as subsequent trauma. It is exciting to give the very best to our patients who have suffered so much.

The stories speak for themselves - these are a few of the many.

Guillame is a 4 year old girl who had severe osteomyelitis of her right forearm. A large amount of dead bone had to be removed however the prognosis is good and with the VAC therapy she only needed to be in the hospital for 1 week.

Luckson is a 21 year old male pictured here with his sister and Rosemarie an occupational therapist from Loma Linda, CA. Luckson had a severe open fracture in the earthquake and was treated elsewhere with a tibial rod which became infected. The implant was removed as well as all infected material, the bone was stabilized with an external fixator and at a later date bone grafted. The VAC has played an essential role in the salvage of his leg which may have been amputated given other circumstances.

It even works for the little ones, this 2 year old girl suffered from osteomyelitis of the tibia and was going to need several sophisticated operations to treat her large wound until the VAC came along and it completely healed without further surgery.

This young man lost his R leg in the Jan 12 earthquake but because of the VAC and a skin graft we were able to save the knee and an adequate amount of bone below in order for him to have a much simpler below the knee type of prosthesis. He is seen here in a tent in front of the hospital.

Mirlanda is an 11 year old girl that is well known at our hospital as we have been battling a very severe infection in her R femur that was fractured in the earthquake. The VAC has played a vital role in her healing.

The VAC has become a badge of honor amongst our patients and they often ask before surgery "are you going to give me one of the machines?".

Thank you to KCI and the wound care nurses and surgeons who have been instrumental in helping bring this technology to those in need.