Burn Injuries Requiring Hospitalization for Infants Younger Than 1 Year


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Abstract

To investigate burn injuries requiring hospitalization sustained during the first year of life, clinical data collected during hospital treatment of infants younger than 1 year were reviewed. The principal aim was to chart the etiology and mechanism of burn injuries in this group to focus on the necessary preventive measures. The authors also review literature focusing especially on children younger than 1 year. Patients identified in the electronic database were referred to the Hospital for Children and Adolescents, Helsinki University Hospital, Helsinki, Finland, from January 2005 to December 2009. Specific inclusion criteria yielded a cohort of 20 patient records, which accounted for 3% of the 692 admissions due to pediatric burn injury during the 5-year study period. The male to female ratio was 1:1.5 and the mean age was 6.3 months. Most burns were sustained at home during domestic tasks and were most often witnessed. The etiology in the majority of the cases was scalding (85%), while contact burns accounted for the remaining. The final TBSA ranged from 0.5 to 40% (mean 8.5%). In 13 cases (65%), the initial TBSA was overestimated. Overall, it was concluded that burn injuries in this age group are most often witnessed and take place while the infant is being held at the same time as the hot item. Parental education on typical situations in which burn injuries happen in preambulatory infants may help reduce the number of burn injuries.

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