Epidemiology and Outcome Analysis of Severe Extensive Burns: A 12-Year Summary of 103 Cases in a Burn Center in China

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The purpose of this article is to improve the treatment of severe extensive burns (SEB) patients by summarizing treatment experience in recent 12 years in China and analyzing the follow-up quality of life (QOL) in these patients. Clinical data and rescue measures of 103 SEB patients (≥70% TBSA) admitted in a burn center in Shanghai between 1997 and 2009 were reviewed, and QOL and hand function of those who survived more than 2 years were assessed by Brief Version of Burn Specific Health scale-B and Michigan Hand Outcome Questionnaire. Of these, 76.7% were caused by flames and 15.5% caused by scald. The median burn area was 87.5% (interquartile range, 77.0–95.0%) TBSA, of which third-degree burns accounted for 56.5% (interquartile range, 25.8–80.0%) TBSA; 71.8% were complicated by inhalation injury. The occurrence of in-hospital complications was 75.7%, with the respiratory system complications predominating (49.5%). The fatality rate was 28.2%, mainly due to sepsis and multiple organ dysfunction syndrome. Work, body image, and heat sensitivity got the lowest Brief Version of Burn Specific Health scale-B scores in all nine domains, and Michigan Hand Outcome Questionnaire scores were also relatively poor. Flame burns remain to be the main cause of SEB in China in recent 12 years. Treatment is still challenged because of the depth and extensive burn area and high occurrence of multiple system complications. How to ameliorate QOL of SEB patients, intensify the functional rehabilitation, and improve their physical appearance in particular remain to be a crux.

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