Burns are responsible for significant morbidity and mortality and are among the most devastating of all traumatic injuries, resulting in physical impairment, permanent disabilities, and emotional distress. It is conservatively estimated that each year 1 million persons seek medical care for burns and burn-related injuries with more than 50,000 patients being hospitalized for the treatment of burns. A burn occurs when some or all of the cells in the skin or underlying tissue is damaged due to thermal heat, radiation, electricity or contact with chemicals. The long-term consequences of burn injuries include: scars, severe muscle catabolism and wasting, joint contracture, heterotopic ossification, and other functional and aesthetic concerns. Nevertheless, major advances recently in the health care management of burn patients from the initial emergency room visit to the long-term physical therapy and reconstructive surgery have significantly improved patient outcomes. These recent advances highlight the significance of burn research to elucidate the pathophysiology of burns, as well as to improve the treatment of the acute and reconstructive sequelae of burn injuries to improve patients' overall wellbeing. In this chapter, we will review the epidemiology of burns and the diagnosis and management of burn patients requiring medical care. We will further highlight the longterm consequences of burns on the skin, muscle, and joints, emphasizing the importance of early wound care and the advances in clinical care and basic science research to improve outcomes.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Title of host publication||Burns: Epidemiology, Management and Impact on Muscle & Joint Functions|
|Publisher||Nova Science Publishers, Inc.|
|Number of pages||36|
|State||Published - Jan 1 2014|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Sciences(all)