Article Type

Original Study


Background Mortality rates are important outcome parameters after burn injury and can serve as objective endpoints for quality control. Causes of death after severe burn have changed over time, but the exact distribution of causes of death remains unknown. Objective The aim of the study was to estimate the mortality rates and determine the causes of death in patients admitted to the Burn Center of the Faculty of Medicine, Menofia University, between 1 January 2006 and 31 June 2010. Patients and methods Between January 2006 and June 2010, 516 patients were enrolled. A predesigned questionnaire was used to collect data about percentage of burn, site of burn, and inhalation injury as well as data about age, sex, burnt area, occurrence, and causes of death. Results Of the 516 patients included, 96 died, giving an overall mortality rate of 18.6%. The main cause of death was multiorgan failure, which accounted for 48.1% of the mortality cases. Septicemia caused about 27% of deaths, burn shock led to 19.7% of deaths, and other causes were the reason for 5.2% of mortality cases. Comparison of the overall mortality during 2006-2010 with that observed in a previous study conducted in the same unit during 2002-2004 revealed a decrease in rate (24.1-18.6%). Conclusion and recommendations Mortality rate among burn patients is influenced by several risk factors such as age, total body surface area involved, and the presence of inhalation injury. The mortality rate from severe burns has decreased but remains high despite improvements in burn care. Early fluid resuscitation, early detection and correction of any laboratory defects, nutritional support, diagnosis and treatment of inhalation injury, and prevention of burn-related infections are recommended in the treatment of acute burn.