Publications by authors named "Nicole S Gibran"

160 Publications

Temperature sensitivity after burn injury: A Burn Model System National Database Hot Topic.

J Burn Care Res 2021 Jul 2. Epub 2021 Jul 2.

University of Washington Department of Surgery, Seattle, WA, USA.

Background: People living with burn injury often report temperature sensitivity. However, its epidemiology and associations with health-related quality of life (HRQOL) are unknown. We aimed to characterize temperature sensitivity and determine its impact on HRQOL to inform patient education after recovery from burn injury.

Methods: We used the multicenter, longitudinal Burn Model System National Database to assess temperature sensitivity at 6, 12 and 24 months after burn injury. Chi-square and Kruskal-Wallis tests determined differences in patient and injury characteristics. Multivariable, multi-level generalized linear regression models determined the association of temperature sensitivity with Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWL) scores and Veterans RAND 12 (VR-12) physical (PCS) and mental health summary (MCS) component scores.

Results: The cohort comprised 637 participants. Two thirds (66%) experienced temperature sensitivity. They had larger burns (12% TBSA, IQR 4-30 vs 5% TBSA, IQR 2-15; p<0.0001), required more grafting (5% TBSA, IQR 1-19 vs 2% TBSA, IQR 0-6; p<0.0001), and had higher intensity of pruritus at discharge (11% severe vs 5% severe; p=0.002). After adjusting for confounding variables, temperature sensitivity was strongly associated with lower SWL (OR -3.2, 95% CI -5.2, -1.1) and MCS (OR -4.0, 95% CI -6.9, -1.2) at 6-months. Temperature sensitivity decreased over time (43% at discharge, 4% at 24-months) and was not associated with poorer HRQOL at 12 and 24 months.

Conclusion: Temperature sensitivity is common after burn injury and associated with worse SWL and MCS during the first year after injury. However, temperature sensitivity seems to improve and be less intrusive over time.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jbcr/irab125DOI Listing
July 2021

Physical and Psychological Recovery Following Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis: A Patient Survey.

J Burn Care Res 2021 Jun 9. Epub 2021 Jun 9.

Department of Surgery, University of Washington Medicine UW Medicine Regional Burn Center, Seattle, WA.

Stevens Johnson Syndrome (SJS) and Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis (TEN) are acute, life-threatening diseases that cause sloughing of the skin and mucous membranes. Despite improved survival rates, few studies focus on long-term outcomes. We conducted a single-center review of all patients with SJS/TEN admitted from January 2008-2014. SJS/TEN survivors were invited to participate in the validated Veterans RAND 12 Item Health Survey (VR-12) to assess health related quality of life using a mental health composite score (MCS) and physical health component score (PCS). The sample was compared to US norms using one sample two tailed t-tests. A second questionnaire addressed potential long-term medical complications related to SJS/TEN. Of 81 treated subjects, 24 (30%) long-term survivors responded. Participants identified cutaneous sequelae most frequently (79%), followed by nail problems (70%), oral (62%) and ocular (58%) sequalae. Thirty-eight percent rated their quality of life to be "unchanged" to "much better" since their episode of SJS/TEN. The average PCS score was lower than US population norms (mean: 36 vs. 50, p=0.006), indicating persistent physical sequelae from SJS/TEN. These results suggest that SJS/TEN survivors continue to suffer from long-term complications that impair their quality of life and warrant ongoing follow-up by a multidisciplinary care team.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jbcr/irab109DOI Listing
June 2021

Adolescents with and without head and neck burns: comparison of long-term outcomes in the burn model system national database.

Burns 2021 Apr 20. Epub 2021 Apr 20.

Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Harvard Medical School, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Charlestown, MA, United States. Electronic address:

Introduction: Facial burns account for persistent differences in psychosocial functioning in adult burn survivors. Although adolescent burn survivors experience myriad chronic sequelae, little is known about the effect of facial injuries. This study examines differences in long-term outcomes with and without head and neck involvement.

Methods: Data collected for 392 burn survivors between 14-17.9 years of age from the Burn Model System National Database (2006-2015) were analyzed. Comparisons were made between two groups based on presence of a head and neck burn (H&N) using the following patient reported outcome measures: Satisfaction with Appearance Scale, Satisfaction with Life Scale, Community Integration Questionnaire, and Short Form-12 Health Survey at 6, 12, and 24 months after injury. Regression analyses were used to assess association between outcome measures and H&N group at 12-months.

Results: The H&N group had more extensive burns, had longer hospital stays, were more likely to be burned by fire/flame and were more likely to be Hispanic compared to the non-H&N group. Regression analysis found that H&N burn status was associated with worse SWAP scores. No significant associations were found between H&N burn status and other outcome measures.

Conclusions: Adolescents with H&N burn status showed significantly worse satisfaction with appearance at 12-months after injury. Future research should examine interventions to help improve body image and coping for adolescent burn survivors with head and neck burns.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.burns.2021.04.015DOI Listing
April 2021

Burn model system national longitudinal database representativeness by race, ethnicity, gender, and age.

PM R 2021 Apr 22. Epub 2021 Apr 22.

Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Harvard Medical School, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Charlestown, Massachusetts, USA.

Introduction: Representativeness of research populations impacts the ability to extrapolate findings. The Burn Model System (BMS) National Database is one of the largest prospective, longitudinal, multi-center research repositories collecting patient-reported outcomes after burn injury.

Objective: To assess if the BMS Database is representative of the population that is eligible to participate.

Design: Data on adult burn survivors who were eligible for the BMS Database from 2015 to 2019 were analyzed.

Setting: Not applicable.

Participants: Burn survivors treated at BMS centers meeting eligibility criteria for the BMS Database. Eligibility for the database is based on burn size and receipt of autografting surgery.

Interventions: Not applicable.

Main Outcome Measure(s): Race, ethnicity, gender, and age were compared between individuals who did and did not enroll. Regression analysis examined the correlation between demographic characteristics and study enrollment. Additional regression analysis examined the association between enrollment and the intersection of race, ethnicity, and gender.

Results: A total of 982 adult burn survivors were eligible for the BMS database during the study period. Of those who were eligible, 72.1% Enrolled and 27.9% were Not Enrolled. The Enrolled group included more female and more younger survivors compared to the Not Enrolled group. In regression analyses, Black/African American burn survivors were less likely and individuals identifying as female were more likely to enroll in the BMS Database. Furthermore, White men and women were more likely to enroll compared to Black/African American men and women, and non-Hispanic/Latino men were more likely to enroll compared to Hispanic/Latino men.

Conclusions: This study found differences in BMS Database enrollment by race, ethnicity, and gender. Further research is warranted to investigate causes for the disparities found in this study. In addition, strategies are needed to improve enrollment to ensure future representativeness.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/pmrj.12618DOI Listing
April 2021

Inpatient and post-discharge outcomes following inhalation injury among critically injured burn patients.

J Burn Care Res 2021 Feb 9. Epub 2021 Feb 9.

Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center, University of Washington, Seattle, WA.

Inhalation injury is associated with high inpatient mortality, but the impact of inhalation injury after discharge and on non-mortality outcomes are poorly characterized. To address this gap, we evaluated the effect of inhalation injury on post-discharge morbidity, mortality and hospital readmissions among patients who sustained burn injury, as well as on in-hospital outcomes for context.This was a retrospective cohort study of patients with cutaneous fire/flame burns admitted to a burn center intensive care unit from 1/1/2009-12/31/2015, with or without inhalation injury. Records were linked to statewide hospital admission and vital statistics databases to assess post-discharge outcomes. Mixed-effects Poisson regression was used to assess mortality, complications, and readmissions. The overall cohort included 830 patients with cutaneous burns; of these, 201 patients had inhalation injury. In-hospital mortality was 31% among inhalation injury patients versus 6% in patients without inhalation injury (adjusted OR 2.35; 95% CI 1.66-3.31). Inhalation injury was also associated with an increased risk of in-hospital pneumonia and tracheostomy (p<0.05 for all). Inhalation injury was not associated with greater post-discharge mortality, all-cause readmission, readmission for pulmonary diagnosis, or readmission requiring intubation. Among the subset of patients with bronchoscopy-confirmed inhalation injury (n=124; 62% of inhalation injuries), higher injury grade was not associated with greater inpatient or post-discharge mortality. Inhalation injury was associated with increased early morbidity and mortality, but did not contribute to post-discharge mortality or readmission. These findings have implications for shared decision-making with patients and families, and for estimating healthcare utilization after initial hospitalization.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jbcr/irab029DOI Listing
February 2021

Burn survivors' perception of recovery after injury: A Northwest Regional Burn Model System investigation.

Burns 2020 12 5;46(8):1768-1774. Epub 2020 Oct 5.

UW Medicine Regional Burn Center, Department of Surgery, University of Washington, 325 9th Avenue, Seattle, WA, 98104, United States.

Introduction: Previous reports suggest that many factors impact recovery from burn injury. To improve our understanding of these factors, we queried adult burn survivors using a mixed method design during the first year after injury.

Methods: An anonymous, 2-page survey was developed and administered to adult burn survivors during routine outpatient clinic follow-up visits at a regional burn center. Participants rated issues of concern and their impacts on return to pre-burn activity levels. Both quantitative and qualitative data were obtained. Descriptive statistics were used to analyze quantitative data and thematic analysis was used to identify, analyze and report patterns from open-ended responses.

Results: Over seven months in 2016, 187 patients completed the anonymous survey. Study participants were predominantly male, white, and non-Hispanic. Participants who had not yet returned to pre-burn function reported worse outcomes for all issues queried compared to those who had. Burn survivors from racial and ethnic minority groups reported greater difficulty with accessing medical care and information about their injury as well as higher levels of self-identified posttraumatic stress, issues related to appearance and concerns for loss of strength. Several themes and sub-themes were identified that had both negative and positive impact on early recovery. Such themes included: healing process, psychological recovery and emotional health, and community reintegration/employment.

Conclusions: Several themes from responses provided insight into challenges as well as key support systems during the first year of recovery after injury. Collectively, these findings can be used to direct clinical outpatient care, patient education and psychosocial support services.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.burns.2020.09.008DOI Listing
December 2020

Contracture Severity at Hospital Discharge in Children: A Burn Model System Database Study.

J Burn Care Res 2021 May;42(3):425-433

Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Spaulding Research Institute and Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts.

Contractures can complicate burn recovery. There are limited studies examining the prevalence of contractures following burns in pediatrics. This study investigates contracture outcomes by location, injury, severity, length of stay, and developmental stage. Data were obtained from the Burn Model System between 1994 and 2003. All patients younger than the age of 18 with at least one joint contracture at hospital discharge were included. Sixteen areas of impaired movement from the shoulder, elbow, wrist, hand, hip, knee, and ankle joints were examined. Analysis of variance was used to assess the association between contracture severity, burn size, and length of stay. Age groupings were evaluated for developmental patterns. A P value of less than .05 was considered statistically significant. Data from 225 patients yielded 1597 contractures (758 in the hand) with a mean of 7.1 contractures (median 4) per patient. Mean contracture severity ranged from 17% (elbow extension) to 41% (ankle plantarflexion) loss of movement. Statistically significant associations were found between active range of motion loss and burn size, length of stay, and age groupings. The data illustrate quantitative assessment of burn contractures in pediatric patients at discharge in a multicenter database. Size of injury correlates with range of motion loss for many joint motions, reflecting the anticipated morbidity of contracture for pediatric burn survivors. These results serve as a potential reference for range of motion outcomes in the pediatric burn population, which could serve as a comparison for local practices, quality improvement measures, and future research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jbcr/iraa169DOI Listing
May 2021

Impact of the affordable care act's medicaid expansion on burn outcomes and disposition.

Burns 2021 02 10;47(1):35-41. Epub 2020 Nov 10.

University of Washington Department of Surgery, United States.

Background: We aimed to analyze the impact of the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid Expansion on clinical outcomes and patient disposition after burn injury. We hypothesized that increased insurance coverage results in improved outcomes and higher rates of discharge to inpatient rehabilitation.

Methods: We reviewed the University of Washington Regional Burn Center registry data for patients admitted from 2011 to 2018. Patients were grouped into two categories: before (2011-2013) and after (2015-2018) Medicaid expansion; we excluded 2014 data to serve as a washout period. Outcomes assessed included length of hospital stay, patient disposition, and mortality. Multivariable logistic and linear regression models with covariates for sex, age, burn size, ethnicity ethnicity, distance from burn center, etiology of burn, and presence of inhalation injury were used to determine the impact of Medicaid expansion on outcomes.

Results: Rates of uninsured patients decreased while Medicaid coverage increased. Despite increased median burn size after Medicaid expansion, inpatient mortality rates did not change, but average acute care length of stay increased. More patients were discharged to rehabilitation centers.

Conclusions: Our study corroborates prior findings of increased insurance coverage since Medicaid expansion. Increased insurance coverage is associated with higher rates of discharge to inpatient rehabilitation programs after burn injury.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.burns.2020.10.030DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7855926PMC
February 2021

Mortality prognostication scores do not predict long-term, health-related quality of life after burn: A burn model system national database study.

Burns 2021 02 4;47(1):42-51. Epub 2020 Oct 4.

Department of Surgery, University of Washington, Northwest Regional Burn Model System; Northwest Regional Burn Model System.

Objective: Despite improved mortality rates after burn injury, many patients face significant long-term physical and psychosocial disabilities. We aimed to determine whether commonly used mortality prognostication scores predict long-term, health-related quality of life after burn injury. By doing so, we might add evidence to support goals of care discussions and facilitate shared decision-making efforts in the hours and days after a life-changing injury.

Methods: We used the multicenter National Institute of Disability, Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research Burn Model System database (1994-2019) to analyze SF-12 physical (PCS) and mental component (MCS) scores among survivors one year after major burn injury. Ninety percent of the observations were randomly assigned to a model development dataset. Multilevel, mixed-effects, linear regression models determined the relationship between revised Baux and Ryan Scores and SF-12 measures. Additionally, we tested a model with disaggregated independent and other covariates easily obtained around the time of index admission: age, sex, race, burn size, inhalation injury. Residuals from the remaining 10% of observations in the validation dataset were examined.

Results: The analysis included 1606 respondents (median age 42 years, IQR 28-53 years; 70% male). Median burn size was 16% TBSA (IQR 6-30) and 13% of respondents sustained inhalation injury. Higher revised Baux and Ryan Scores and age, burn size, and inhalation injury were significantly correlated with lower PCS, but were not correlated with MCS. Female sex, black race, burn size, and inhalation injury correlated with lower MCS. All models poorly explained the variance in SF-12 scores (adjusted r 0.01-0.12).

Conclusion: Higher revised Baux and Ryan Scores negatively correlated with long-term physical health, but not mental health, after burn injury. Regardless, the models poorly explained the variance in SF-12 scores one year after injury. More accurate models are needed to predict long-term, health-related quality of life and support shared decision-making during acute burn care.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.burns.2020.09.007DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7533049PMC
February 2021

Correlation Between the Warrior/Worrier Gene on Post Burn Pruritus and Scarring: A Prospective Cohort Study.

Ann Surg 2020 Sep 24. Epub 2020 Sep 24.

Department of Surgery, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington.

Introduction: Associations between genetic variation and clinical conditions suggest that single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) might correlate with postburn outcomes. COMT modulates catecholamine metabolism, and polymorphisms within the rs4680 allele result in variable enzyme activity. Catecholamines are known to modulate the inflammatory process and may affect scar formation. The aim of this study was to determine whether variants in the rs4680 SNP of the COMT gene are associated with post-burn pruritus and scarring.

Methods: Adult burn patients, admitted between 2007 and 2017, with deep partial-thickness burns or delayed healing provided blood samples for genotyping and self-reported itch scores within 1 year of injury. Scarring was measured using the Vancouver Scar Scale (VSS). Itch scores ≥4 and VSS scores >7 were considered severe. Genomic deoxyribonucleic acid was genotyped for the rs4680 SNP using realtime polymerase chain reaction (PCR).

Results: Median itch and VSS scores were highest for GG homozygotes and lowest for AA homozygotes. This difference was statistically significant for VSS score (P < 0.0001) and approached significance for itch (P = 0.052). After accounting for confounding variables, including race/ethnicity, age, sex, and burn size, the GG homozygotes demonstrated worse scarring (odds ratio 1.88, P = 0.005) compared to AG heterozygotes whereas the AA homozygotes trended towards a protective effect against scarring (odds ratio 0.71, P = 0.10). Itch did not demonstrate a statistically significant difference between rs4680 genotype.

Conclusions: Our analysis identifies a trend between COMT genotype with scarring, with rs4680 genetic variation constituting an independent risk factor for VSS score.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/SLA.0000000000004235DOI Listing
September 2020

"Living Well" After Burn Injury: Using Case Reports to Illustrate Significant Contributions From the Burn Model System Research Program.

J Burn Care Res 2021 May;42(3):398-407

Department of Surgery, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington.

The Burn Model System (BMS) program of research has been funded since 1993 by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR). The overarching aim of this program is to improve outcomes and quality of life for people with burns in the areas of health and function, employment, and community living and participation. This review reports on BMS contributions that have affected the lives of individuals with a significant burn injury using case reports to associate BMS contributions with recovery. In January 2020, current BMS grantee researchers assessed peer-reviewed BMS publications from 1994 to 2020. Using case report methodology, contributions were linked to three individuals treated at one of the four Burn Model System institutions. With over 25 years of NIDILRR funding, unique BMS contributions to patient recovery were identified and categorized into one of several domains: treatment, assessment measures, sequelae, peer support, employment, and long-term functional outcomes. A second review for significant results of BMS research that add to the understanding of burn injury, pathophysiology, and recovery research was identified and categorized as injury recovery research. The case study participants featured in this review identified select NIDILRR research contributions as having direct, personal benefit to their recovery. The knowledge generation and clinical innovation that this research program has contributed to our collective understanding of recovery after burn injury is considerable. Using case study methodology with three adult burn survivors, we highlight the impact and individual significance of program findings and reinforce the recognition that the value of any clinical research must have relevance to the lives of the study population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jbcr/iraa161DOI Listing
May 2021

Inhalation injury is associated with long-term employment outcomes in the burn population: Findings from a cross-sectional examination of the Burn Model System National Database.

PLoS One 2020 23;15(9):e0239556. Epub 2020 Sep 23.

Department of Surgery, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States of America.

Introduction: Inhalation injuries carry significant acute care burden including prolonged ventilator days and length of stay. However, few studies have examined post-acute outcomes of inhalation injury survivors. This study compares the long-term outcomes of burn survivors with and without inhalation injury.

Methods: Data collected by the Burn Model System National Database from 1993 to 2019 were analyzed. Demographic and clinical characteristics for adult burn survivors with and without inhalation injury were examined. Outcomes included employment status, Short Form-12/Veterans Rand-12 Physical Composite Score (SF-12/VR-12 PCS), Short Form-12/Veterans Rand-12 Mental Composite Score (SF-12/VR-12 MCS), and Satisfaction With Life Scale (SWLS) at 24 months post-injury. Regression models were used to assess the impacts of sociodemographic and clinical covariates on long-term outcome measures. All models controlled for demographic and clinical characteristics.

Results: Data from 1,871 individuals were analyzed (208 with inhalation injury; 1,663 without inhalation injury). The inhalation injury population had a median age of 40.1 years, 68.8% were male, and 69% were White, non-Hispanic. Individuals that sustained an inhalation injury had larger burn size, more operations, and longer lengths of hospital stay (p<0.001). Individuals with inhalation injury were less likely to be employed at 24 months post-injury compared to survivors without inhalation injury (OR = 0.63, p = 0.028). There were no significant differences in PCS, MCS, or SWLS scores between groups in adjusted regression analyses.

Conclusions: Burn survivors with inhalation injury were significantly less likely to be employed at 24 months post-injury compared to survivors without inhalation injury. However, other health-related quality of life outcomes were similar between groups. This study suggests distinct long-term outcomes in adult burn survivors with inhalation injury which may inform future resource allocation and treatment paradigms.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0239556PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7511001PMC
November 2020

Commentary on "Socioeconomic Factors and Intensive Care Unit-Related Cognitive Impairment".

Authors:
Nicole S Gibran

Ann Surg 2020 10;272(4):603

University of Washington, Seattle, Washington.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/SLA.0000000000004375DOI Listing
October 2020

Development of Proxy and Self-report Burn Model System Pediatric Itch Interference Scales: A National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research Burn Model System Study.

J Burn Care Res 2021 Mar;42(2):212-219

Department of Surgery, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington.

Pruritus is a commonly reported symptom after burn injury. Valid and reliable scales to measure itch in pediatric burn survivors are important for treatment and epidemiological studies. This study sought to develop psychometrically sound, publicly available self- and proxy-report measures of itch for use in pediatric burn survivors suitable for use in research and clinical practice. A panel of burn experts developed a definition of itch interference and a set of parallel self- and proxy-report candidate items that covered important activities affected by itch. Candidate items were evaluated in cognitive interviews with pediatric burn survivors (n = 4) and proxies (n = 2). Items were translated to Spanish and administered in both English and Spanish to a sample (N = 264) of pediatric burn survivors and/or their proxy enrolled in the Burn Model System (BMS) longitudinal database. The mean age of the pediatric sample was 13 years and average time since burn 5 years. The final itch interference measures each included 5 parallel items calibrated using a one-parameter graded response item response theory model, with a mean of 50 representing the average itch interference of the sample. Reliability of the scores is excellent between the mean and two standard deviations above. Initial analyses provide support for validity of the score. Concordance between the self- and proxy-report scores was moderate (ICC = 0.68). The results support the reliability and validity of the itch scale in children and youth with burn injury. The new BMS Pediatric Itch Interference scales are freely and publicly available at https://burndata.washington.edu/itch.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jbcr/iraa133DOI Listing
March 2021

Evaluation of Patient-Reported Outcomes in Burn Survivors Undergoing Reconstructive Surgery in the Rehabilitative Period.

Plast Reconstr Surg 2020 07;146(1):171-182

Stanford, Calif.; Seattle, Wash.; and Boston, Mass.

Background: Health-related quality of life is decreased in burn survivors, with scars implicated as a cause. The authors aim to characterize the use of reconstructive surgery following hospitalization and determine whether patient-reported outcomes change over time. The authors hypothesized improvement in health-related quality of life following reconstructive surgery.

Methods: Adult burn survivors undergoing reconstructive surgery within 24 months after injury were extracted from a prospective, longitudinal database from 5 U.S. burn centers (Burn Model System). Surgery was classified by problem as follows: scar, contracture, and open wound. The authors evaluated predictors of surgery using logistic regression. Short Form-12/Veterans RAND 12 health survey outcomes at 6, 12, and 24 months were compared at follow-up intervals and matched with nonoperated participants using propensity score matching.

Results: Three hundred seventy-two of 1359 participants (27.4 percent) underwent one or more reconstructive operation within 24 months of injury. Factors that increased the likelihood of surgery included number of operations during index hospitalization (p < 0.001), hand (p = 0.001) and perineal involvement (p = 0.042), and range-of-motion limitation at discharge (p < 0.001). Compared to the physical component scores of peers who were not operated on, physical component scores increased for participants undergoing scar operations; however, these gains were only significant for those undergoing surgery more than 6 months after injury (p < 0.05). Matched physical component scores showed nonsignificant differences following contracture operations. Mental component scores were unchanged or lower following scar and contracture surgery.

Conclusions: Participants requiring more operations during index admission were more likely to undergo reconstructive surgery. There were improvements in Short Form-12/Veterans RAND 12 scores for those undergoing scar operations more than 6 months after injury, although contracture operations were not associated with significant differences in Short Form-12/Veterans RAND 12 scores.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/PRS.0000000000006909DOI Listing
July 2020

Pain across traumatic injury groups: A National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research model systems study.

J Trauma Acute Care Surg 2020 10;89(4):829-833

From the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine (D.A., A.M.B., K.M., J.M.H., C.H.B.), and Department of Surgery, Harborview Medical Center (N.S.G., G.J.C.), University of Washington, Seattle, Washington.

Background: Pain is a common problem after traumatic injury. We describe pain intensity and interference at baseline and 1 year postinjury in burn, traumatic brain injury (TBI), and spinal cord injury (SCI) survivors and compare them with the general population (GP). We tested a custom Patient Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) pain interference short form developed for use in trauma populations.

Methods: We administered a pain intensity numerical rating scale and custom PROMIS pain interference short forms at baseline and/or 1 year postinjury from participants (≥18 years) at three Model System projects (burn, TBI, and SCI). Scores were compared across injury groups and pain intensity levels, and to the GP. Reliability and floor and ceiling effects of the custom PROMIS pain measures were calculated.

Results: Participants (burn, 161; TBI, 232; SCI, 134) responded to the pain intensity and/or pain interference measures at baseline (n = 432), 1 year (n = 288), or both (n = 193). At baseline, pain interference and intensity were both significantly higher in all three groups than in the GP (all p < 0.01). At 1 year, average pain intensity in SCI and burn (p < 0.01) participants was higher than the GP, but only SCI participants reported higher pain interference (p < 0.01) than the GP. Half of all participants reported clinically significant pain interference (55 or higher) at baseline and one third at 1 year. Reliability of the custom pain interference measure was excellent (>0.9) between T-scores of 48 and 79.

Conclusion: The custom pain interference short forms functioned well and demonstrated the utility of the custom PROMIS pain interference short forms in traumatic injury. Results indicate that, for many people with burn, TBI and SCI, pain remains an ongoing concern long after the acute injury phase is over. This suggests a need to continue to assess pain months or years after injury to provide better pain management for those with traumatic injuries.

Level Of Evidence: Epidemiologic/Therapeutic study, level IV.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/TA.0000000000002849DOI Listing
October 2020

The Impact of Comorbid Conditions on Long-Term Patient-Reported Outcomes From Burn Survivors.

J Burn Care Res 2020 09;41(5):956-962

Division of Trauma, Burn, & Critical Care Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Washington, Seattle.

Preburn comorbidities increase the risk of death in the acute phase, and negatively impact quality of life among survivors. Investigations to date have only evaluated comorbidities as indices, limiting the ability to target conditions and develop strategies for risk reduction. Therefore, we aimed to evaluate the differential effects of specific conditions on long-term, patient-reported outcomes after burn injury. A prospectively maintained trauma registry was merged with a longitudinal database of patient-reported outcomes from a regional burn center from 2007 to 2018. Demographic data, injury-specific information, and the prevalence of 20 comorbidities were systematically documented. The impact of comorbidities on responses to Short Form-12/Veterans RAND 12 (SF/VR-12) health surveys at 6, 12, and 24 months postinjury was evaluated with generalized linear models. The merged dataset included 493 adult participants. Median age was 46 years (interquartile range, IQR 32-57 years), and 72% were male. Median burn size was 14% TBSA (IQR 5-28%). Seventy percent of participants had ≥1 comorbidity (median 1 comorbidity/participant; IQR 0-2 comorbidities). SF/VR-12 mental component summary scores at 6 and 12 months postinjury were negatively associated with mental illness (P < .001, P = .013). SF/VR-12 physical component summary (PCS) scores were negatively associated with smoking (P = .019), diabetes (P = .001), and alcohol use disorder (P = .001) at 6-month follow-up. Twelve-month SF/VR-12 PCS scores were negatively associated with prior trauma admission (P = .001) and diabetes (P = .042). Twenty-four-month SF/VR-12 PCS scores were negatively associated with mental illness (P = .003). Smoking, alcohol use disorder, and diabetes were associated with lower PCS scores 6 months after injury; diabetes persisted as a negatively associated covariate at 12 months. Mental component summary scores were negatively associated with mental illness 6 and 12 months postinjury. Integrated models of postdischarge comorbidity management need to be tested in burn patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jbcr/iraa090DOI Listing
September 2020

The impact of discharge contracture on return to work after burn injury: A Burn Model System investigation.

Burns 2020 05 20;46(3):539-545. Epub 2020 Feb 20.

Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Harvard Medical School, United States.

Introduction: Despite many advances in burn care, the development of extremity contracture remains a common and vexing problem. Extremity contractures have been documented in up to one third of severely burned patients at discharge. However, little is known about the long-term impact of these contractures. The purpose of this study was to examine the association of extremity contractures with employment after burn injury.

Methods: We obtained data from the Burn Model System database from 1994 to 2003. We included in the study cohort all adult patients who were working prior to injury and identified those discharged with and without a contracture in one of the major extremity joints (shoulder, elbow, wrist, hip, knee and ankle). We classified contracture severity according to mild, moderate and severe categories. We performed descriptive analyses and predictive modeling to identify injury and patient factors associated with return to work (RTW) at 6, 12, and 24 months.

Results: A total of 1,203 participant records met criteria for study inclusion. Of these, 415 (35%) had developed a contracture at discharge; 9% mild, 12% moderate, and 14% severe. Among 801 (67%) participants who had complete data at 6 months after discharge, 70% of patients without contracture had returned to work compared to 45% of patients with contractures (p < 0.001). RTW increased at each subsequent follow-up time point for the contracture group, however, it remained significantly lower than in no-contracture group (both p < 0.01). In multivariable analyses, female sex, non-Caucasian ethnicity, larger burn size, alcohol abuse, number of in-hospital operations, amputation, and in-hospital complications were associated with a lower likelihood of employment. In adjusted analyses, discharge contracture was associated with a lower probability of RTW at all 3 time points, although its impact significantly diminished at 24 months.

Conclusions: This study indicates an association between discharge contracture and reduced employment 6, 12 and 24 months after burn injury. Among many other identified patient, injury, and hospitalization related factors that are barriers to RTW, the presence of a contracture at discharge adds a significant reintegration burden for working-age burn patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.burns.2020.02.001DOI Listing
May 2020

Burn injury.

Nat Rev Dis Primers 2020 02 13;6(1):11. Epub 2020 Feb 13.

Departments of Surgery and Psychiatry, Rady Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Burn injuries are under-appreciated injuries that are associated with substantial morbidity and mortality. Burn injuries, particularly severe burns, are accompanied by an immune and inflammatory response, metabolic changes and distributive shock that can be challenging to manage and can lead to multiple organ failure. Of great importance is that the injury affects not only the physical health, but also the mental health and quality of life of the patient. Accordingly, patients with burn injury cannot be considered recovered when the wounds have healed; instead, burn injury leads to long-term profound alterations that must be addressed to optimize quality of life. Burn care providers are, therefore, faced with a plethora of challenges including acute and critical care management, long-term care and rehabilitation. The aim of this Primer is not only to give an overview and update about burn care, but also to raise awareness of the ongoing challenges and stigmata associated with burn injuries.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41572-020-0145-5DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7224101PMC
February 2020

Exploring the Burn Model System National Database: Burn injuries, substance misuse, and the CAGE questionnaire.

Burns 2020 05 31;46(3):745-747. Epub 2019 Dec 31.

Department of Clinical Research, Shriners Hospitals for Children - Boston, Boston, MA, United States; Department of Surgery, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, United States; Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States. Electronic address:

Burn survivors who misuse alcohol and/other substances have been associated with poorer long-term outcomes and clinical complications following injury. The self-reported CAGE questionnaire (Cut down, Annoyed, Guilty, and Eye-opener) is an outcomes assessment tool used to screen for potential substance misuse. Understanding the persistence and emergence of potential substance misuse through examination of CAGE scores may provide important information about this population. Using data collected from the Burn Model System National Database, demographic and clinical characteristics of individuals who reported positive CAGE scores (total score of ≥2) and those who reported negative CAGE scores (total score of 0 or 1) for either alcohol or other drugs were compared.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.burns.2019.12.016DOI Listing
May 2020

Early patient deaths after transfer to a regional burn center.

Burns 2020 02 16;46(1):97-103. Epub 2019 Dec 16.

Department of Surgery, UW Medicine Regional Burn Center, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, United States.

Introduction: Patients who sustain burn injuries are frequently transferred to regional burn centers. Severely injured patients, unlikely to survive, may be transported far from home and family to die shortly after arrival. An examination of early deaths, those that happen within a week of transfer, may offer an opportunity to revise the way we think about critical burns and consider the best way to provide regional care.

Methods: This is a focused review of burn patients who survived ≤1 week after transfer to a regional center from 2013-2017. Originating location data such as city, state, population at origin were obtained. Transfer data, including mode of transport and distance traveled, as well as patient characteristics, Total Body Surface Area (TBSA) burned, inhalation injury, medical history with calculation of revised-Baux (r-Baux) score were analyzed.

Results: 25 patients (1.2%) met inclusion criteria. Patients were transferred from a wide geographic area with population ranges of 1000 to 279,000. 21 patients met criteria for burn resuscitation by TBSA; 4 (19%) were placed on comfort care upon arrival, 7 (33%) were placed on comfort care after discussion with the patient's family, and 10 (48%) received full resuscitation efforts. Of these 10 patients, 2 died as "full code", 8 were transitioned to comfort care after failed resuscitation or other events. Code status was not always addressed prior to the decision to transfer. Two patients were transferred after cardiac arrest in the field both of which had significant medical comorbidities in addition to their burn.

Conclusions: Regional burn centers support a variety of populations. Transferring patients for which care is futile may have a profound impact on resource utilization from a variety of perspectives including transferring centers, receiving centers, regional Emergency Medical Services and families. Referring providers need to be supported in identifying these severely injured, potentially expectant patients. Transfer of patients may negatively impact families as a loved one may die far from home, before family can arrive. With our increasing ability to utilize telemedicine, transfer may not always provide the best support we can offer for providers, patients, and families.

Applicability Of Research To Practice: Early deaths after transfer to a regional burn center, especially those that do not undergo a full resuscitation, should be critically examined to determine the appropriateness of transfer in a palliative, patient and family centered approach.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.burns.2019.02.022DOI Listing
February 2020

Factors Affecting Employment After Burn Injury in the United States: A Burn Model System National Database Investigation.

Arch Phys Med Rehabil 2020 01 15;101(1S):S71-S85. Epub 2019 Oct 15.

Department of Surgery, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington.

Objective: To investigate the effect of patient and injury characteristics on employment for working-age, adult survivors of burn injury using the multicenter Burn Model System national database.

Design: Longitudinal survey.

Setting: Multicenter regional burn centers.

Participants: Adult burn survivors (N=967) age≥18 years with known employment status prior to injury were included in the analysis at 12 months after injury.

Interventions: Not applicable.

Main Outcome Measures: Employment status at 12 months after injury.

Results: The analyses determined that those employed preinjury had higher odds of being employed (odds ratio [OR]=8.1; 95% confidence interval [CI], 4.9-13.1). White, non-Hispanic individuals were also more likely to be employed (OR=1.49; 95% CI, 1.0-2.1). Older individuals, females, those with longer hospitalizations, amputation during the acute hospitalization, and those with high pain interference at hospital discharge had lower odds of working after injury. Preinjury living situation, preinjury alcohol and drug misuse, number of acute operations and burn size (total body surface area, %) were not significant predictors of employment status at 12 months after burn injury.

Conclusion: Preinjury employment remains the most significant predictor for postburn employment. Although past reports have focused on predictors for postburn employment, we believe that we need to seek greater understanding of modifiable risk factors for unemployment and examine issues related to work retention, performance, accommodations, and career trajectories for the working-age survivor of burn injury.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.apmr.2019.09.009DOI Listing
January 2020

Postacute Care Setting Is Associated With Employment After Burn Injury.

Arch Phys Med Rehabil 2019 11 3;100(11):2015-2021. Epub 2019 Jul 3.

Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts. Electronic address:

Objective: To examine differences in long-term employment outcomes in the postacute care setting.

Design: Retrospective review of the prospectively collected Burn Model System National Database.

Setting And Participants: A total of 695 adult survivors of burn injury enrolled between May 1994 and June 2016 who required postacute care at a Burn Model System center following acute care discharge were included. Participants were divided into 2 groups based on acute care discharge disposition. Those who received postacute care at an inpatient rehabilitation facility (IRF) following acute care were included in the IRF group (N=447), and those who were treated at a skilled nursing facility, long-term care hospital, or other extended-care facility following acute care were included in the Other Rehab group (N=248).

Interventions: Not applicable.

Main Outcome Measures: Employment status at 12 months postinjury. Propensity score matching and logistic regression were utilized to determine the effect of postacute care setting on employment status.

Results: Individuals in the IRF group had larger burns and were more likely to have an inhalation injury and to undergo amputation. At 12 months postinjury, the IRF group had over 9 times increased odds of being employed compared to the Other Rehab group, using propensity score matching (P=.046).

Conclusions: While admitting patients with more severe injuries, IRFs provided a long-term benefit for survivors of burn injury in terms of regaining employment. Given the current lack of evidence-based guidelines on postacute care decisions, the results of this study shed light on the potential benefits of the intensive services provided at IRFs in this population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.apmr.2019.06.007DOI Listing
November 2019

Trends of Burn Injury in the United States: 1990 to 2016.

Ann Surg 2019 12;270(6):944-953

Burn Center, Department of Surgery, University of Washington, Seattle, WA.

Objective: The aim of this study is to report patterns of burn injury within the United States from 1990 to 2016 with regard to age, sex, geography, and year.

Summary Background Data: Advances in the management of burn injuries as well as successful public health efforts have contributed to reductions in the annual incidence and mortality of burns. However, several studies suggest that these reductions are not equally distributed throughout the US population.

Main Outcomes And Measures: The Global Burden of Disease Study 2016 was utilized to collect incidence, mortality, disability-adjusted life years (DALYs), and years lived with disability (YLD) from 1990 to 2016. All measures were computed with 95% uncertainty intervals (UI).

Results: The overall incidence of burn injury in the United States has decreased from 215 (95% UI, 183-246) to 140 (95% UI, 117-161) per 100,000. However, the relative mortality of burn injury has been fixed over the 26-year study period. Alaska had the highest rates of burn incidence in 1990 and 2016, closely followed by southeastern states. When adjusted for incidence, relative mortality in 1990 was highest in Alabama and Mississippi and the mortality-incidence ratio increased for these states in 2016. In addition, 35 states also demonstrated an increase in the relative mortality of burn injury during the study period.

Conclusions: Regional trends of burn incidence and mortality are highly variable and are likely due to a multitude of factors. Addressing these disparities will require close examination of the contributing factors of burn injury and severity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/SLA.0000000000003447DOI Listing
December 2019

Outpatient opioid use of burn patients: A retrospective review.

Burns 2019 12 19;45(8):1737-1742. Epub 2019 Jun 19.

University of Washington, Department of Surgery, Seattle, WA, USA.

Introduction: Opioid overuse is a growing patient safety issue but continue to be integral to burn pain management. This study aims to characterize opioid use in discharged patients and factors for predictive of long term use.

Methods: Participants with burns admitted to a single center from 2006 to 2015 were included. Total outpatient morphine equivalent dose (MED) was recorded at discharge and each clinic visit. Burn size, percent grafted, age, sex, and preadmission drug use were collected. For each time point, multivariate logistic regression was performed to examine the relationship of discharge MED and long-term opioid use, adjusting for age, sex, burn size, and percent grafted. MED was divided into low (0-150 mg per day), medium (151-300 mg per day), and high (greater than 301 mg) groups on day of discharge.

Results: At discharge, 366 (90%) patients received opioids. At day 14, both the medium MED (OR 2.72; CI 1.18-6.23) and high MED (OR 2.74; CI 1.02-7.37) groups had an increased risk for continued opioid use. On day 60, only the high MED group (OR 6.06; CI 1.60-22.97) had an increased risk. History of drug use was significant at 60 days (OR 7.67; 1.67-35.26) and alcohol use was significant at 14 days (OR 3.14; CI 1.25-7.93) and 30 days (OR 5.92; CI 1.81-19.36).

Conclusions: Whereas opioids are widely prescribed upon discharge, most patients no longer use them 30 days later. Higher opiate utilization at discharge increases risk of long term use, as does pre-injury drug and alcohol use, but only temporarily.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.burns.2019.05.019DOI Listing
December 2019

Nursing Understanding and Perceptions of Delirium: Assessing Current Knowledge, Attitudes, and Beliefs in a Burn ICU.

J Burn Care Res 2019 06;40(4):471-477

Department of Surgery, UW Medicine Regional Burn Center, University of Washington, Seattle.

The number of delirium days in hospitalized patients directly correlates with mortality and long-term cognitive dysfunction. Burn patients are at greater risk for delirium due to prolonged mechanical ventilation, high sedative and analgesic medication requirements, and the common need for multiple operations. Limited research exists on nurses' understanding and comfort using delirium screening tools and preventive interventions. A process improvement project was developed in a single, regional burn intensive care unit (BICU) with the goal of increasing RN staff awareness of delirium, delirium assessment, and preventive interventions. A 10-question survey was developed and administered to the BICU RN staff before and after the educational intervention. Both quantitative and qualitative data analyses were performed. Twenty-seven (38%) anonymous surveys were returned. In pre- and postintervention surveys, respondents agreed that nursing interventions were important in preventing delirium. Despite educational intervention, 26% of the respondents reported that a tool is not needed to identify delirium. Survey analysis indicated strong support for nonpharmacologic nursing interventions in preventing delirium as well as reducing pharmacologic interventions, especially benzodiazepines. Mechanical ventilation was perceived as a barrier to performing the Confusion Assessment Method for the Intensive Care Unit (CAM-ICU) in both pre- and postsurveys. Staff compliance with documenting CAM-ICU assessments increased and CAM-positive days decreased over the project timeline. Overall, BICU nurses' awareness and general knowledge about delirium increased and specific knowledge deficits were discovered. Continued education about the CAM-ICU tool is still needed; additionally addressing barriers within the structure of the unit to provide nurses more resources to properly assess and prevent delirium.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jbcr/irz040DOI Listing
June 2019

The Effects of Early Neuropathic Pain Control With Gabapentin on Long-Term Chronic Pain and Itch in Burn Patients.

J Burn Care Res 2019 06;40(4):457-463

UW Medicine Regional Burn Center, Seattle, Washington.

Gabapentin has analgesic efficacy for neuropathic pain and is increasingly used in burn care. This study investigated the effect of a neuropathic pain control protocol, as well as early gabapentin initiation (<72 hours from injury) on total inpatient opioid use, chronic pain, and itch. This is a single-institution retrospective cohort study of patients over age 14 admitted between 2006 and 2016 with burns. They compared patients who did not receive gabapentin with those who had early gabapentin initiation vs late initiation. They also compared patients who used gabapentin before initiation of a neuropathic pain protocol (February 2015) to those after. Primary outcomes were total inpatient gabapentin, morphine equivalent dose (MED), longitudinal pain and itch, as well as SF-12v2® Health Survey mental and physical component summary (MCS/PCS) at discharge, 6, 12, and 24 months postinjury. Ordinal logistic regression analysis was used to examine pain and itch scores. Linear regression models examined MCS and PCS between groups. Models were adjusted for age, sex, TBSA burned, area grafted, MED, and ICU stay. There was no significant difference in MED with early initiation, yet inpatient gabapentin use increased from 43.9 to 59.5 g (P < .001) with late initiation. The neuropathic pain protocol did not significantly change total gabapentin use (P = .184) in patients receiving gabapentin but decreased opioid use from 58.1 to 17.4 g MED (P = .008). Their results suggest that neither early gabapentin nor its use in a standardized neuropathic pain protocol improves long-term pain, itch, PCS, or MCS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jbcr/irz036DOI Listing
June 2019

A Comparison of Contracture Severity at Acute Discharge in Patients With and Without Heterotopic Ossification: A Burn Model System National Database Study.

J Burn Care Res 2019 04;40(3):349-354

Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts.

This study assesses the association between heterotopic ossification and upper extremity contracture by comparing goniometric measured active range of motion outcomes of patients with and without heterotopic ossification. Data were obtained from the Burn Model System National Database between 1994 and 2003 for patients more than 18 years with elbow contracture at acute discharge. Absolute losses in elbow range of motion were compared for those with and without radiologic evidence of heterotopic ossification (location undefined) and were further examined by burn size subgroups using Wilcoxon rank-sum test. Differences in elbow range of motion were estimated using regression models, adjusted for demographic and clinical variables. Loss of range of motion of shoulder, wrist, forearm, and hand were also compared. From 407 instances of elbow contracture, the subjects with heterotopic ossification were found to have greater median absolute loss of elbow flexion among all survivors (median 50° [IQR 45°] vs 20° [30°], P < .0001), for the 20 to 40% total body surface area burn subgroup (70° [20°] vs 20° [30°], P = .0008) and for the >40% subgroup (50° [45°] vs 30° [32°], P = .03). The adjusted estimate of the mean difference in the absolute loss of elbow flexion between groups was 23.5° (SE ±7.2°, P = .0013). This study adds to our understanding of the potential effect of heterotopic ossification on upper extremity joint range of motion, demonstrating a significant association between the presence of heterotopic ossification and elbow flexion contracture severity. Further study is needed to determine the functional implications of heterotopic ossification and develop treatment protocols.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jbcr/irz031DOI Listing
April 2019