Small burns with many challenges: The paediatric outpatient in NSW

Kelly Waddell1, Madeleine Jacques2

1 The Children’s Hospital at Westmead, locked bag 4001, Westmead NSW 2145,
2 The Children’s Hospital at Westmead, locked bag 4001, Westmead NSW 2145,

Paediatric outpatient burns in NSW present as technically small burns when focusing on total body surface are, with a recent study by Gabbe et al (2015), revealing that all presentations to The Children’s Hospital at Westmead Burns outpatient clinic presented with a burn injury less than 10% total body surface area (TBSA).

Although the surface area of a child’s burn wound may be small, the challenges faced by the multidisciplinary team in holistically treating these are vast.

These include (along with wound and surgical management), pain management, feeding, and social issues to be considered when determining in the most effective treatment plan for the patient and their family.

This presentation will compare and contrast the myriad of different challenges experienced with care of the paediatric burn patient. It will focus on patients presenting to the burns and plastics treatment centre or via the Kidsburns digital referral service over a 12 month period with a less than 2% TBSA burn to face, hands or chest. This study will show that burns outpatient management still requires a full multidisciplinary approach to burns care and that funding as well as educational support needs to be increased to allow for further growth and development of regional resources to allow patients and their families to remain close to home, whilst still receiving first class care for their burns injury.

Gabbe, B, Watterson, D, Singer, Y & Darton, A 2015, “Outpatient presentations to burn centers: Data from the Burns Registry of Australia and New Zealand outpatient pilot project”,  Burns, vol.41, no.3, pp.446-453.


Key Words

Paediatric burns
Outpatient management

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