Our Patients Say it Best

Your friends and neighbors from throughout southwest Michigan and beyond share their experiences at Spectrum Health Lakeland. Do you have a story to share? Click on the "What's Your Story" button and complete the form. 

A Pep in His Step - Erik Rhode


Sep, 2018

What started as a small sore on his right leg, soon progressed into a much bigger problem for 47-year-old Erik Rhode. When the sore first appeared, Erik brought it to the attention of his primary care provider who suggested treating it with a topical ointment. It wasn’t until Erik began traveling more frequently for his management role at Meijer, that his condition began to worsen until one day he could barely walk due to the pain.

That’s when Erik decided to make an appointment at a wound clinic in Kalamazoo. Over the course of six months Erik had appointments every week to clean out the wound. The care team also prescribed another topical medication to treat what was thought to be pyoderma gangrenosum – a rare condition that causes tissue and cells to die, causing deep ulcers.

“Nothing seem to be working – my leg swelled up so much I couldn’t even get my shoe on anymore,” said Erik. “I knew I needed a second opinion.”

That’s when one of his friends told him about the Lakeland Wound Center in Niles.

“I walked in and asked if they could heal me,” said Erik. “I was in so much pain it was unbelievable. I had developed neuropathy in my lower leg and it was swollen up to my knee.”

Erik met with one of the center’s wound specialists, who suggested the wound was caused by a bacterial infection. He treated the area with a medicated foam and prescribed a course of antibiotics. After a few weeks the swelling began to decrease drastically.

“Since going to the Lakeland Wound Center I’ve seen a 100 percent improvement. I am experiencing a lot less pain and no longer have to lay down constantly with my leg in the air,” said Erik. “I really valued the attention the doctor gave to my wound – he was very gentle and took his time.”

Although Erik continues to visit the wound center he is very happy with the way his leg has healed.

“People at work joke that I’ve got my swagger back now – I no longer walk with a limp,” said Erik. “I would recommend the Lakeland Wound Center to anyone.”


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