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Types of Burns Burn injuries can be classified as thermal (heat), chemical, or electrical. Thermal (heat) burns.

.Thermal burns can be caused by flames, contact with hot obj ects, flammable vapor that ignites and causes a flash or an expolsion, steam, or hot liquid. Chemical burns. Chemical agents can cause tissue damage and death if they come i n contact with the skin. Three types of chemicals acid ,alkalis, and organic com pounds are responsible for most chemical burns. Electrical burns. The severity of injury from contact with electric current depe nds on the type of current (direct or alternating), the voltage, the area of the body exposed and the duration of contact. Depth of burns There are three types of burns that can result from a variety of mechanisms. Typ es of burns include first, second and third degree burns. These burns may also b e referred to as superficial, partial and full-thickness burns. Types of burns m ay also be classified according to the mechanism of burn injury. Superficial Burns (first- degree) These types of burns cause superficial erythema (redness) and swelling and may b e quite painful. The skin will blanch upon pressure. These types of burns involv e only the outermost layer of skin, or the epidermis. Treatment generally involv es cooling the burn with running water or the application of cool cloths and app lication of an over-the-counter burn ointment or a soothing agent, such as aloe cream or gel. These types of burns heal quickly and do not result in scarring. A physician should be consulted if superficial burns are extensive, especially in children or the elderly. Partial-Thickness Burns (second- degree) Partial-thickness burns affect both the epidermis and the dermis to varying degr ees. Superficial partial-thickness burns do not involve the full thickness of th e dermis, while deep partial-thickness burns may involve the dermis more extensi vely. Depending on how much of the dermis is affected, these types of burns may result in scarring and may require skin grafting to heal. It may be difficult to determine whether a burn affects the dermis superficially or more deeply; the d ifference lies partially in healing time, as superficial partial-thickness burns will heal more quickly, often in less than 3 weeks. These types of burns will c ause blisters. Blisters should never be punctured but should be left intact, as rupturing them may increase the risk of infection. These types of burns may caus e permanent disfigurement. They may also be quite painful, as nerves are intact and undamaged. Full-Thickness Burns (third-degree) Full-thickness burns extend down into the hypodermis, or subcutaneous tissue. Th ese types of burns may affect underlying bone, nerves, tendons and other structu res. These burns in themselves are generally not painful; however, there may be surrounding areas of partial-thickness burns that are painful. These burns will require surgery to close and may result in permanent disfigurement and disabilit y, especially if they occur over a joint. The risk for complications, especially infection, is very high and these types of burns may be life-threatening if the y are extensive. These types of burns should be cared for in specialized burn ce nters.

The rule of nines assesses the percentage of burn and is used to help guide trea

tment decisions including fluid resuscitation and becomes part of the guidelines to determine transfer to a burn unit. You can estimate the body surface area on an adult that has been burned by using multiples of 9. An adult who has been burned, the percent of the body involved can be calculated as follows: Head = 9% Chest (front) = 9% Abdomen (front) = 9% Upper/mid/low back and buttocks = 18% Each arm = 9% (front = 4.5%, back = 4.5%) Groin = 1% Each leg = 18% total (front = 9%, back = 9%) As an example, if both legs (18% x 2 = 36%), the groin (1%) and the front chest and abdomen were burned, this would involve 55% of the body. Medically reviewed by Benjamin C. Wedro, MD, FAAEM Consumer e-Tools are not intended to provide professional advice or recommend pa rticular products. Physicians and healthcare professionals should exercise their own clinical judgment when assessing the results of our tools or calculators. C onsumers should consult a doctor for advice when assessing the results. Burns and scalds-1st aid Severe burns Treatment Start cooling the burn immediately under running water for at least 10 minutes.

Dial 999 for an ambulance. Make the casualty as comfortable as possible, lie them down. Continue to pour copious amounts of cold water over the burn for at least ten mi nutes or until the pain is relieved. Whilst wearing disposable gloves, remove jewellery, watch or clothing from the a ffected area - unless it is sticking to the skin. Cover the burn with clean, non-fluffy material to protect from infection. Cloth, a clean plastic bag or kitchen film all make good dressings. Treat for shock. Minor burns Treatment For minor burns, hold the affected area under cold water for at least 10 minutes or until the pain subsides. Remove jewelry etc. and cover the burn as detailed above. If a minor burn is larger than a postage stamp it requires medical attention. Al l deep burns of any size require urgent hospital treatment. Clothing on fire Treatment Stop the casualty panicking or running any movement or breeze will fan the flame s. Drop the casualty to the ground. If possible, wrap the casualty tightly in a coat, curtain or blanket (not the ny lon or cellular type), rug or other heavy-duty fabric. The best fabric is wool. Roll the casualty along the ground until the flames have been smothered. On all burns: Do not use lotions, ointments and creams. Do not use adhesive dressings. Do not break blisters.

Care for Thermal Burns Burn care to reduce pain, protect against infection, and determine the need for medical care. Most burns are minor and can be managed without medical care.If clothing is burning, have the victim on the ground using the stop, drop, and roll method. Smoother the flames with a blanket or douse the victim with water. Care for First- degree Burns 1. Cool the burn with cool water until the part is pain free (this often t akes 10 minutes) 2. After the burn cools, apply an aloe vera gel or skin moisturizer to keep the skin moistened and to reduce itching and peeling. 3. Give an over-the-counter pain medication such as ibuprofen. Care for Small second- degree burns ( 10% BSA) 1. Cool the burn with cool water until the part is pain free (this often t akes 10 minutes) 2. After the burn has been cooled, apply lotions or aloe vera. 3. Cover the urn loosely with a dry, nonstick, sterile or clean dressing. D o not break any blisters. 4. Give an OTC pain mediction such as ibuprofen. 5. Seek medical care. Care for Large second- Degree (> 20% BSA) and all Third Degree Burns 1. Remove clothing and jewelry that are not stuck to the burned area. 2. Cover the burn loosely with a dry, nonstick, sterile or clean dressing. 3. Care for shock 4. Call 9-1-1 Chemical Burns A chemical burn results when a caustic or corrosive substance touches the skin. Examples of such substances include acids, alkalis, and organic compou nds. Because chemicals continue to burn s long as they are in contact with the s kin as rapidly as possible. Care for Chemical Burns If a chemical burns the skin, follow these steps: 1. Remove the cause of the burn by first brushing any remaining dry chemica l and then rinsing the chemical off the skin surface with cool, gently running w ater for 20 minutes or more. 2. Remove clothing or jewelry that has been contaminated by the chemical. 3. Wrap the burned area loosely with a dry, sterile dressing or a clean clo th. 4. Rewash the burned area for several more minutes if the person experience s increased burning after the initial washing. 5. Take an over-the-counter pain reliever. These include aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others), naproxen (Aleve) or acetaminophen (Tylenol, others). U se caution when giving aspirin to children or teenagers. Though aspirin is appro ved for use in children older than age 2, children and teenagers recovering from chickenpox or flu-like symptoms should never take aspirin. Talk to your doctor if you have concerns. Get a tetanus shot. All burns are susceptible to tetanus. Doctors recommend you get a tetanus shot every 10 years. If your last shot was more than five years ag o, your doctor may recommend a tetanus shot booster. Minor chemical burns usually heal without further treatment. Seek emergency medical assistance if: The person shows signs of shock, such as fainting, pale complexion or breathing in a notably shallow manner The chemical burn penetrated through the first layer of skin, and the resulting second-degree burn covers an area more than 3 inches (7.6 centimeters) in diamet er The chemical burn occurred on the eye, hands, feet, face, groin or buttocks, or over a major joint The person has pain that cannot be controlled with over-the-counter pain relieve rs Electrical Burns

There are three types of electrical injuries: thermal burn (flame), arc burn (fl ash), and true electrical injury (contact). A thermal burn results when clothing or objects in contact with the skin are ignited by electric current. An arc burns occurs when electricity jumps, or arcs, from one spot to another. A lthough the duration of the flash may be brief, it usually causes extensive supe rficial injuries. A true electrical injury happens when an electric current passes through the bod y, which can disrupt the normal heart rhythm and cause cardiac arrest, other int ernal injuries, and burns. The first steps to take when a person is in contact with an electrical source ar e: Have someone call or other emergency services. Do not touch the "electrified person" with your hands. Unplug the appliance or turn off the main power switch. Try to remove the person from the electrical source, if you cannot turn the powe r off. Do this only if you can do so safely by: o Standing on a dry surface, such as a rubber doormat or a pile of papers or books. Make sure you are not standing in or near water. o Using a dry wooden object, such as a broom handle, to push the person aw ay from the electrical source. Do not use anything wet or made of metal. Check to see if the person responds to touch or being talked to after separating him or her from the electrical source. Electrical burns can affect the electric al activity of the heart and cause heartbeat changes. If the person is not respo nding, start CPR. What should I do about electrical burns that aren't as serious? Rinse the burns with water, and apply a bandage. There may be burns where the el ectrical current entered the body and where it left the body. Call your doctor to discuss your burn injury. If you have a visible burn to the skin, an evaluation by your doctor is usually needed. Sunburn Signs and symptoms of sunburn usually appear within a few hours of exposure, bringing pain, redness, swelling and occasional blistering. Because exposure of ten affects a large area of your skin, sunburn can cause headache, fever and fat igue. If you have a sunburn: Take a cool bath or shower. You can also apply a clean towel dampened with cool water. Apply an aloe vera or moisturizing lotion several times a day. Leave blisters intact to speed healing and avoid infection. If they burst on the ir own, apply an antibacterial ointment on the open areas.