Dr. Stephen Morris on Traditional Burn Treatments

Dr. Stephen Morris on Traditional Burn Treatments


There are dozens of traditional treatments
going all around the world, different things that people use from mud to toothpaste to
butter to cold water, to ice. A couple of the more common treatments, at least here
in America, are either really cold water or ice. We have seen patients who will put the kids
in snow or pack ice around the burn. That can be harmful, because that could cool not
only the burn down, but the entire patient. And that can be detrimental, of course. Also,
large amounts of cold water, when the water evaporates, that can result in hypothermia
as well. And so, we really like to find something that
can cool locally without cooling the whole body down. BurnFree can be applied just to
the area of the burn, it itself is not iced cold, but rather is room temperature, so it
allows things to cool down to room temperature, where it’s probably right where we want it
to be.

1 Comment

  • Ulysses8765 says:

    Like so many other advertorials for hydrogels, this older one distorts the picture regarding the correct application of burn first aid the best being running water for a fixed period, the best supported by evidence is for a 20 minute period (Bartlett 2008, Cuttle 2010). And any EMS practitioner will be aware this period can be moderated according to factors like local environmental conditions, the season or even tap water temperature. Water cooling is far and away superior to hydrogels whose application requires by default, exposure of the patient to the environs to facilitate both convective and evaporative cooling. As these products are marketed as dressings as well but have no defined period of use then hypothermia or conversely, overheating of the burn injury can occur as well because many users cover the dressings, or try to over-wrap the product so it doesn't fall off the burn. I like how the doctor lumps water cooling in with toothpaste and mud. yet water cooling has had extensive investigation with formal studies demonstrating its outstanding benefits on burn injury going right back to the 1930's (Rose 1936) right up until 2018. By contrast there are NO studies proving the efficacy of hydrogels, none proving claims it doesn't contribute to hypothermia, none, providing evidence to demonstrate its most beneficial period of covering and much more. Hydrogels like Burnfree are among the most heavily marketed products to EMS and also one of the least supported by studies. Most EMS are now abandoning these technologies in favour of cool (NOT cold) water and simple dressing models Doc. All the rest of such promos like this video is pure spin.

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