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Features of intentional non-scald burns

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.


This category includes contact burns (e.g. cigarettes, domestic irons, etc), caustic burns, flame burns and microwave burns, all of which have been intentionally inflicted upon children. By far the commonest intentional non-scald burns are contact burns which may not warrant hospital admission; unfortunately to date, the literature relating to intentional non-scald burns is predominantly non-comparative and only two new studies have been identified since 20111,2.

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  1. Ramakrishnan MK, Mathivanan T, Sankar J. Profile of children abused by burning. Annals of Burns and Fire Disasters. 2010;23(1)8-12 [Pubmed]

  2. Wibbenmeyer L, Liao J, Heard J, Kealey L, Kealey G, Oral R. Factors related to child maltreatment in children presenting with burn injuries. Journal of Burn Care & Research. 2014;35(5):374-381 [Pubmed]

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   – Overall results
   – Age
   – Gender
   – Influence of ethnicity and socio-economic group

Contact burns

   – Intentional burns from domestic irons

   – Accidental burns from domestic irons

   – Intentional burns from hairdryers
   – Accidental burns from hairdryers

   – Intentional burns from cigarettes

   – Intentional burns from cigarette lighters

   – Intentional burns from grease / oil

   – Intentional burns from unidentified objects

   – Intentional burns from other objects

Flame burns

   – Intentional flame burns

   – Accidental flame burns

Microwave burns

   – Intentional microwave burns

Caustic burns

   – Intentional caustic burns

   – Accidental caustic burns initially mistaken for intentional burns

   – Accidental caustic burns

   – Causes of accidental caustic burns

Implications for practice

Research implications

Limitations of review findings

Other useful references


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