The study conducted by researchers at the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus concludes that burn-associated injuries among U.S. children and adolescents may be a more significant public health concern than previously estimated.
The study, published in the Journal of Burn Care and Rehabilitation, found that annually, fires and burns result in almost 4,000 deaths and more than 745,000 non-hospitalized injuries among all age groups.
Senior author Dr. Gary Smith found that children under age 2 were more likely to be hospitalized for burns to their hands or wrists and from contact with hot liquids or objects, compared with children ages 3 to 17, who were more likely to be burned by fire.
"Burns often require long periods of rehabilitation, multiple skin grafts and extensive physical therapy," Smith said in a statement. "Not only can burn-related injuries leave patients with lifelong physical and psychological disabilities, they often also result in significant burdens for the patients' families and caregivers."
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