A Single Centre Retrospective Cohort Study of Paediatric Hand and Feet Burns

Dr Emma Lumsden1,2,3, Professor Roy Kimble1,2, Professor Robert Ware3, Dr  Bronwyn Griffin1,2,3

1Queensland Children’s Hospital, South Brisbane, Australia, 2Centre for Children’s Health Research, South Brisbane, Australia, 3Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia


Death in paediatric burns is rare, chronic morbidity is more common. This is observed particularly with hand and feet (HAF) burns. Management of these burns need optimisation to reduce morbidity. A retrospective cohort study was performed to describe the characteristics of HAF and compare them to other burns.

This is a single centre study using local Burns Registry Data to collate patients from 2014 – 2015. Patients were excluded if lost to follow up. Using Stata we performed descriptive analysis for HAF burns. Burden was assessed between HAF and all other burns comparing: days in hospital, number of clinic presentations, length of follow up, number of operations and repeat ED presentations.

The overall proportion of HAF burns was 37% and 13% respectively. Hands were 71% superficial partial thickness (SPT) whereas feet were 52% SPT and 41% deep PT. The most common mechanism for both were contact and scald burns. The median time to epithelialisation was 11 days (IQR 8 -17) for hands and 14 days (IQR 10-23) for feet. The median number of dressing changes was 1 (IQR 1-3) for hands and 2 (IQR 1-4) for feet. The median clinic presentation was 2 (IQR 2-3) for hands and 3 (IQR 2-4) for feet. For hands, 24% and for feet 42% were referred to scar management clinic.

Comparative data TBA.

HAF burns account for almost 50% of paediatric burn workload but only represent 4% TBSA. It is recommended that the management and mechanism of these burns is reviewed to decrease burden.


Dr Emma Lumsden is a first year Principal House Officer in Paediatric Surgery at the Queensland Children’s Hospital. She is the current Ross Walker research fellow and scholarship recipient. She is currently a MPhil candidate at Griffith University under the supervision of Professor Roy Kimble, Dr Bronwyn Griffin, Professor Brigid Gillespie and Professor Robert Ware and intends to submit for PhD candidature at her confirmation.

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