Dr Alicia Miers1,2,3, Dr Bronwyn Griffin1,2,4, Professor Roy Kimble1,2,3,4
1Queensland Children’s Hospital, South Brisbane, Australia, 2University of Queensland, St Lucia, Australia, 3Centre for Children’s Burns and Trauma Research, South Brisbane, 4101, 4Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia
The aim of this study is to document and describe the effects of oven door burns in children. This project hopes to contribute to further evaluation of strategies to reduce the frequency and severity of oven door burns.
Retrospective burns registry and departmental database review of all children with oven door burns treated at The Stuart Pegg Children’s Burns Centre between July 1998 and October 2002 were compared with children treated at the Pegg Leditschke Children’s Burns Centre from the time of its opening in November 2014 to October 2018.
Results revealed that in the 1999-2002 group, thirty-four children, median age ten months, sustained partial thickness burns to the hands. One child required skin grafting and eleven (32%) required scar management. In the 2014-2018 group, seventy-nine children, median age eleven months, sustained superficial or partial thickness burns, with seventy-two cases (90%) involving the hands. Two children required grafting, and six patients required inpatient management. The median time to re-epithelialisation was 10 days for those patients that did not require grafting and 9 patients required scar management (11%).
Oven doors remain a hazard to the hands of young children, especially between the ages of seven and fifteen months. There has been no significant change to the nature or impact of oven door burns between these two groups of data spanning almost twenty years. Action is required to review the safety standards of household oven doors, as the current standards are not effective in protecting children from contact injuries.
Dr Alicia Miers is a Registrar with the Paediatric Surgery, Urology, Burns and Trauma Unit at Queensland Children’s Hospital.