BURNS

A burn is an injury that occurs to the skin or other tissues. A burn that causes minimal skin damage which affects only superficial skin layers is known as a first degree burn. A burn that extends the first layer of the skin is known as a second degree burn. Severe kind of burns that cause damage to every extending layer of the skin are known as third degree burns.

CAUSES

• Majority of burns occur due to flames (caused by fire)
• Hot liquids (wound is called scald)
• Sunburn
• Electrical burns
• Chemical burns (contact with flammable gases)

TREATMENT OPTIONS & PROCEDURE

Skin grafts
Skin is removed from one area of the body and transplanted to another. There are two kinds of skin grafts split thickness grafts (only few layers of outer skin are transplanted) and full-thickness grafts (involve all of the dermis layers being transplanted).

Acute burn surgery
It is a care that is taken immediately after the surgery within 12 to 24 hours. This surgery is needed for extensive burns or critical burns. It begins as a pain medication to ease the burn pain and relax the patient. Patients are administered to fluids or a tetanus shot to prevent dehydration or infection. Post skin graft will also be done to heal the burned area. The exact nature of the surgery is depended on the type and severity of the burn.

Reconstructive burn surgery
After the initial burn wounds are healed, few patients may need a reconstructive surgery that helps improve the appearance of scars. This surgery depends on what area of the body is injured and continued until the patient is satisfied. It is important because scarring limits the normal motion of neck, shoulder, hands or legs. Often facial scarring leads to problems with eyelids, lips, nose or hair. This surgery helps release the flow of motion by repairing the scar. Scars maybe abnormal, wide, thick or discolored and can be improved with various operative and non-operative methods.

Non-operative therapies might involve application of pressure garments, a scar massage or therapies. Operative methods involve scar release procedures, where the scar tissue is removed and the open area is closed by a plastic surgeon. The ways to close these wounds depends on the size of the injury. Skin graft, skin rearrangement and skin donor flaps could be used depending on the location and patient’s injury. Tissue expansion can also be used as an alternative for skin grafting.

RECOVERY PERIOD

In case of minimal burns, it may take 3 – 4 days for total recovery. Whereas for high degree burns and severe injuries it might take weeks, depending on the injured area and its level of severity. It’s better to consult a surgeon in case of deep injuries.

POST TREATMENT CARE

As per your surgeons’ advice start exercising to keep your joints moving and build strength. Proper wound care is to be taken, maintain the regular checkups with the doctor as per appointments. Recovering from burn injuries might be a stressful time, any queries consult the doctor immediately.

TREATMENT COST

Cost varies from case to case, and depends on the individual’s injury occurred. It is suggested to take a personal consultation with the doctor for the exact price.