Test Your Knowledge of Thermal Burns (Postscript 1 of 2)

Evidence-Based Urgent Care Postscript
Urgent Care Management of Patients With Thermal Burns | July 2022

TRUE OR FALSE? To obtain an accurate estimate of total body surface area (TBSA) burned, use an area the size of the patient’s palm to represent 1% TBSA and use this┬ámeasure on all of the patient’s burned skin, regardless of burn thickness.

Answer: FALSE. Superficial burns are NOT included in the TBSA calculations. Only the epidermis is involved in superficial burns, so fluid losses, infection risks, and risk of eschar formation are minimal to nonexistent for skin that has suffered only superficial burns. Superficial burns demonstrate dry, blanching erythema; produce pain; and heal with minimal-to-no scarring in 5 to 10 days.

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