Many patients research pilonidal disease on their own because they are not getting good results from treatment by local physicians or don’t like the treatments offered. Patients often think “There must be a better way!” Often, these patients come to the correct conclusion that the cleft-lift is the best option for treatment of pilonidal disease and they begin searching for a surgeon to perform the operation. They often discover that it is necessary to travel away from home to find an experienced pilonidal surgeon who can successfully perform the cleft-lift operation. Because of this, we see many out-of-town patients. Although we are in the center of the country we have seen patients from as far away as New York, California, Florida, Tennessee, Alabama, Canada, Washington, North Carolina, West Virginia, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Texas, Connecticut, Maryland, Alaska, Hawaii, and Louisiana (see map below).
We do our best to accommodate the travel schedules of patients who are traveling to see us. We try to prepare for the visit as best we can by phone and email. We frequently see a patient for their first actual office visit in the morning and perform surgery later that same day. Although traveling far from home may seem expensive and complicated, having this problem resolved without months of dealing with open wounds is actually a more efficient, less complicated, and more cost effective way to deal with this problem. Dr. Immerman’s pilonidal surgery is performed at both the OakLeaf Surgical Hospital, and Sacred Heart Hospital, in Eau Claire, WI. Both are beautiful, well equipped, modern hospitals with highly skilled and compassionate staff.
To obtain a consultation, please fill out the form on our Contact Page, or you can call or fax us at the numbers listed on that page. There is no obligation to come see us if you do this, and no charges unless you actually come to our clinic. As far as we are concerned, you do not need a referral from your local doctor to see us. Some insurance products require that you have a referral in order to maintain your coverage, and if that happens we will do our best to help.
The more information we have, the better we can advise you if a trip to Eau Claire for a cleft lift is your best option. We will need a description of your medical history as it pertains to your pilonidal problem, any other pertinent medical history, and photos of your pilonidal disease. This link will take you to instructions to taking the photos we need. Please follow the directions carefully. Usually, this will give enough information to determine if surgery is needed, if a cleft lift is appropriate, and if it is safe to proceed in your particular situation. We don’t usually need your actual medical records, but it is important that we know the name of any previous operations you’ve had, particularly if any involved a flap, such as a Limberg, Gluteal, or Rhomboid flap, a V-Y plasty or Z-Plasty. We also need to know if you have ever had any bleeding problems with surgery, or if you have been diagnosed with any autoimmune disease; and are taking any immune suppressants, like prednisone or other steroids, any blood thinners, or any biologics (such as Humera, Enbrel, Remicade, Orencia, Rituxan, Plaquenil) or any medication for an autoimmune disease. (If you are dealing with autoimmune diseases, I strongly recommend that you look at this website for information on how to start on the road to conquering this: http://www.time2thrive.com)
Once we have opened a line of communication with you, we can continue to communicate by phone or email. If you are planning a visit to us, please fill out and return the Medical History Form, Patient Registration Information, and insurance assignment form, and return it to us by mail or email before your visit. You can download these forms by following this link.
Eau Claire is easily accessible via Interstate 94, just 90 miles east of Minneapolis, MN. It is also reachable by air via Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport (shuttle service available from MSP to Eau Claire) or by a connection directly to the local Chippewa Valley Regional Airport. More about travel here. If you are going to stay here for a few days, please look at our page about Eau Claire, with our tips on how to get here, where to stay, and where to eat.
If a cleft-lift is performed, Dr. Immerman places a drain which needs to remain in place a minimum of 4 days – but a week or longer if it is a difficult re-operative situation. The timing of drain removal depends on the amount and appearance of fluid coming out of the drain. We have had patients stay in Eau Claire for a wound check and drain removal at 6 days; or go home and come back in 5-7 days; or have a surgeon, nurse, or wound-care specialist, or family member back home remove the drain. We are happy to work with other physicians to make your recovery as easy as possible.
Our patients come from all over the US and Canada, as you can see on the map to the right.
We routinely take care of patients with pilonidal cysts, non-healing pilonidal wounds, and pilonidal abscesses with great success in the pediatric, teen, and adult age groups.