Ms Hannah Leitch1, Ms Dallas Gillespie2, Ms Rebecca Schrale3
1Tasmanian Health Organisation, Hobart, Australia, 2Tasmanian Health Organisation, Hobart, Australia, 3Tasmanian Health Organisation, Hobart, Australia
Background: Meeting best practice guidelines to minimise contracture development in a full thickness, low voltage lip burn in a rural setting utilising Telehealth with the Tasmanian Burns Unit and the Burns Multidisciplinary team
Clinical Case: A 21-year-old man presented to his local community hospital with a full thickness electrical burn to his lower lip. The patient was appropriately managed in the emergency department and referred to the Tasmanian Burns Unit. After initial management at the local hospital the patient was followed up through Telehealth with the Tasmanian Burns Unit. He required weekly outpatient follow up at the satellite Burns Clinic with an Occupational Therapist with support from the Tasmanian Burns Unit- including the Plastic Surgeon, Burns Clinical Nurse Consultant, and Speech Pathologist.
Through extensive patient education- including nutrition, smoking cessation, wound care, mouth exercises and stretching a positive outcome resulted with a significant increase in vertical and lateral range.
The patient will continue to require ongoing follow up for scar management with the Burns Multidisciplinary team – including the local occupational therapist through the utilisation of Telehealth.
Conclusion: Telehealth services were important in contributing to positive outcomes for a rural patient requiring specialist burns input due to facial burns.
Hannah Leitch, Senior Speech Pathologist at the Royal Hobart Hospital. Currently working on the Burns Unit and Inpatient Rehabilitation at the Royal Hobart Hospital.