Burns typically take place on the skin, which protects the body from the external environment. There are different severity of burns such as minor which can be cared for by the individual and severe that may require intensive treatment and surgeries. Burns can cause infection, pain and scarring, which may have long term effects on a patient. When assessing a patient burns, it is essential to remember the A, B, C, D, E, F approach. This helps to identify if there are any other injuries or complications that could pose an immediate threat to the patient.
Initial Assessment of the burn is vital to ensure the appropriate care is implemented. The assessment should include a medical history, examination of the burn, details of incident, mechanism of injury, duration of exposure to the causative agent and the delivery of first aid. Older and younger individuals pose the highest risk for injury because of physical impairments, reduced mobility, inability to avoid danger and their decision making processes. Since these individuals are at a great risk of injury without being aware, it is up to us as healthcare workers to ensure that incident was not a deliberate act of abuse. .
There are many sources of exposure that can cause a burn such as heat, chemicals, friction, electricity and radiation. The locations and distribution of the burn are factors that play an important role in determining if a patient is able to care for themselves. If the burns are an area that is used predominately every day, such as the hands, feet and face, they may have to undergo rehabilitation. .
The size of the burn is a key factor in deciding the best environment in which the burn should be cared for. It is essential that total body surface area of the burn be accurately measured. Three methods that are commonly used to measure TBA percentages are "Wallace's Rule of Nine", "The Lund and Browder Chart", and 1% hand rule.