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Other useful references

The following is a summary of the systematic review findings up to the date of our most recent literature search. If you have a specific clinical case, we strongly recommend you read all of the relevant references as cited and look for additional material published outside our search dates.


Intentional and unintentional scalds

  • A study examining perineum scalds of a non-abusive nature 1,2
  • Children receiving steam inhalation sustained scalds to thighs, genitalia or abdomen due to spilling the container 1,2
  • A study defined the developmental stage of children and their ability to climb into a bath 3
  • A study which highlighted peoples’ lack of awareness of home tap water temperature 4
  • A classic study defining the time taken to burn skin at different water temperatures 5,6
  • Burns due to neglect outnumber those due to intentional injury (9.3% neglect vs 0.9% intentional out of 440 children) 7
  • Four studies (two American and two from the United Kingdom (UK)) found some correlation between low economic status and incidence of intentional scalds 8-11
    • One American study implied the opposite, although the definition of higher economic status was weak 12
    • Admissions to burns units are higher for children living in deprived areas (1 UK study) 17
  • One American study addressed ethnicity and found no correlation 13
    • A UK study showed that Asian / Asian British and African / African British had a higher percentage of burns admissions than the local population 17
  •  Children with ADHD sustain more burns than those without 14,15
  • “Shower steamer” burn to the abdomen of 17 month old child standing above the jet of steam 16

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  1. Potokar T, Ramaswamy R, Dickson WA. Isolated buttock burns: epidemiology and management. Burns. 2001;27(6):629-34 [Pubmed]
  2. Wallis BA, Turner J, Pearn J, Kimble RM. Scalds as a result of vapour inhalation therapy in children. Burns. 2008;34(4):560-564 [Pubmed]
  3. Allasio D, Fischer, H. Immersion scald burns and the ability of young children to climb into a bathtub. Pediatrics. 2005;115(5):1419-1421 [Pubmed]
  4. Feldman KW, Schaller RT, Feldman JA, McMillon, M. Tap water scald burns in children. Injury Prevention. 1998;4(3):238-242 [Pubmed citation only]
  5. Moritz AR, Henriques, FC. Studies of thermal injury: II. The relative importance of time and surface temperature in the causation of cutaneous burns. American Journal of Pathology. 1947;23(5):695-720 [Pubmed citation only]
  6. Moritz AR. Studies of thermal injury: III. The pathology and pathogenesis of cutaneous burns. An experimental study. American Journal of Pathology. 1947;23(6):915-941 [Pubmed citation only]
  7. Chester DL, Jose RM, Aldlyami E, King H, Moiemen NS. Non-accidental burns in children - are we neglecting neglect? Burns. 2006;32(2):222-228 [Pubmed]
  8. Hammond J, Perez-Stable A, Ward CG. Predictive value of historical and physical characteristics for the diagnosis of child abuse. Southern Medical Journal. 1991;84(2):166-168 [Pubmed]
  9. Hultman CS, Priolo D, Cairns BA, Grant EJ, Peterson HD, Meyer AA. Return to jeopardy: the fate of pediatric burn patients who are victims of abuse and neglect. Journal of Burn Care & Rehabilitation. 1998;19(4):367-376 [Pubmed]
  10. Keen JH, Lendrum J, Wolman B. Inflicted burns and scalds in children. British Medical Journal. 1975;4(5991):268-269 [Pubmed]
  11. Kumar P. Child abuse by thermal injury — a retrospective survey. Burns. 1984;10(5):344-348 [Pubmed]
  12. Gillespie RW. The battered child syndrome: thermal and caustic manifestations. The Journal of Trauma: Injury, Infection, and Critical Care. 1965;5:523-534 [Pubmed citation only]
  13. Hight DW, Bakalar HR, Lloyd JR. Inflicted burns in children: recognition and treatment. Journal of the American Medical Association. 1979;242(6):517-520 [Pubmed]
  14. Badger K, Anderson L, Kagan RJ. Attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder in children with burn injuries. Journal of Burn Care & Research. 2008;29(5):724-729 [Pubmed]
  15. Ghanizadeh A. Small burns among out-patient children and adolescents with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Burns. 2008;34(4):546-548 [Pubmed]
  16. Brywczynski J, Arnold DH. Shower steamer burns in a toddler: case report and brief review of steam burns in children. Pediatric Emergency Care. 2008;24(11):782-784 [Pubmed]
  17. Alnababtah KM, Davies P, Jackson CA, Ashford RL, Filby M. Burn injuries among children from a region-wide paediatric burns unit. British Journal of Nursing. 2011;20(3):156-162 [Pubmed]


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