Functional Outcomes Following Burn Injury

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Abstract

Major advances in functional recovery following burn injury over the last ten years include the development of conceptual framework for disability assessment and its application burn recovery, the description of the long-term outcomes in the burn population, and progress in basic science research leading to new treatments that improve long-term functional outcomes. Future tasks and challenges include the development of common data elements and standards for burn recovery in order to measure and optimize the path toward functional recovery. The development of patient-reported outcome measures with benchmarks for recovery over time has the potential to improve patient-provider communication and quality of patient-centered care. The study of burn recovery should include an examination of resiliency along with the study of disabilities following burn injury. Better understanding of the mechanisms, impact and modulation of hypermetabolism and inflammation following burn injury is essential to improve functional recovery. Continued basic science and clinical research must focus on scar modulation and skin replacements and address recalcitriant problems such as heterotopic ossification. Health tracking technologies should be leveraged to understand and optimize physical therapy interventions.

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