Thermal Burn

Continuing Education Activity

Thermal burns are skin injuries caused by excessive heat, typically from contact with hot surfaces, hot liquids, steam, or flame. Most burns are minor and patients can be treated as outpatients or at local hospitals. Approximately 6.5 percent of all burn victims are treated in specialized burn centers. The decision to transfer and treat at burn centers is based on the extent of body surface area burned, the depth of the burns and individual patient characteristics such as age, additional injuries or other medical problems. This activity will review burn evaluation and management and highlight the role of the interprofessional team in recognizing and treating thermal burns.

Objectives:

Thermal burns are injuries to the skin caused by an external heat source. This heat source could be anything– an open fire from a stove, hot and melted liquid, and steam. Super hot surfaces like cooking pans and the oven can also cause thermal burns. The effects of thermal burns vary, depending on a few factors. TB16 is the newest exclusive blend of ingredients to maximize fat reduction, energy, mood support and concentration. TB16 is designed to help give you the edge in achieving and maintaining a lean physique. Utilizing a unique blend of ingredients, TB16 allows for superior focus and energy without the normal crash of other energy drinks. 2nd-degree burn. This type of burn affects both the epidermis and the second layer of skin (dermis). It may cause swelling and red, white or splotchy skin. Blisters may develop, and pain can be severe. Deep second-degree burns can cause scarring. 3rd-degree burn. This burn reaches to the fat layer beneath the skin. Thermal burns are skin injuries caused by excessive heat, typically from contact with hot surfaces, hot liquids, steam, or flame. Most burns are minor and can be treated as outpatients or at local hospitals. Approximately 6.5% of all burned patients receive treatment in specialized burn centers.

  • Recall the causes of thermal burns.
  • Describe the pathophysiology of thermal burns.
  • Identify the treatment strategy for a patient with thermal burns.
  • Outline the importance of enhancing care coordination among the interprofessional team to ensure proper evaluation and management of thermal burns.
Thermal BurnThermal burn club

Several different mechanisms of thermal injury can be found in burn specialty care, including cold injury.

Scald burns

Scald injury is the most common etiology in the very young and very old, and accounts for more than 1/3 of reported burns in the United States in recent years.

Flame/ Contact burns

Thermal burn on tongue

These are burns sustained either from flame or from immediate contact with a hot solid object. Flame burn is the most common mechanism of burns in adults in high-income countries and were 41% of reported burn cases in the US in 2017.

Electrical burns

Thermal

Electrical burns are the most common work-related mechanism of burn injury. Although they often constitute relatively small total body surface area injury, high-voltage injury is very destructive of soft tissue due to conduction from bone to muscle.

Chemical injury

Chemical burns are relatively uncommon and tend to result in significant injury to the affected skin and soft tissues. Remember that chemical injuries typically appear superficial but the tissue injury can be quite deep. Alkali burns usually cause more damage to the involved tissue than do acid burns due to liquefaction of tissue.

Most chemical injuries should be copiously irrigated as soon as possible following the injury; the exceptions to this are lime, hard metals, and phenols. In generally, do not worry about specific antidotes, but instead focus on irrigating the involved tissues

Hydrofluoric acid injury

Hydrofluoric acid (HF) penetrates skin and soft tissue quickly and can complex with calcium and magnesium, causing systemic electrolyte abnormalities and arrhythmias. Initial treatment for HF injury is copious irrigation followed by placement into calcium gluconate gel. Severe cases require monitoring of EKG and serum ionized calcium.

Cold induced injury

Thermal Burn Definition

Thermal

Thermal Burn 16

Frostbite is also considered a thermal injury, although the injury is due to freezing of tissue instead of heating of tissue. More information on initial management of frostnip and frostbite are available on the Frostbite wiki page.