Nevin Manimala Statistics

Epidemiology and early bacterial colonization of minor and moderate pediatric burns: A retrospective study from a developing country

Burns. 2023 Oct 31:S0305-4179(23)00215-2. doi: 10.1016/j.burns.2023.10.014. Online ahead of print.


OBJECTIVES: Infection is still the leading cause of morbidity and mortality among burn patients worldwide. Isolation and identification of pediatric burn wound bacterial colonizers can prevent infection and improve burn trauma treatment. In this study, we explored early microbial colonizers within the burn wounds and the susceptibility of those isolates to antibiotics among hospitalized pediatric patients with minor and moderate burns, clinically significant infections and outcomes.

METHODS: A retrospective analysis of pediatric patients admitted to the inpatient pediatric surgical ward and treated for minor and moderate burns from 2009 to 2018 was performed.

RESULTS: One hundred six patients met the inclusion criteria. The mean age was 3.6 ± three years (0.2-14.1 years). The most common type of burn was scald burns (82.1%). The mean TBSA of the hospitalized pediatric burn cases was 8.5% (IQR, 6-12%). Seventy-nine (74.5%) patients had positive wound cultures at admission, regardless of the hospital admission day. Fifty-eight (73.4%) had one bacterial growth (mono isolate), while 21 (26.6%) had mixed growth or poly isolates. Among patients with mixed growth or poly isolate, 16 had two bacteria, three had three bacteria, and one had four bacteria isolated, totaling 105 isolated microorganisms (14 different species, 70.5% Gram-positive bacteria and 29.5% Gram-negative bacteria). Twelve patients (11%) developed clinically significant infections (eleven got burn wound infection, and one had septicemia). All patients received prophylactic systemic antibiotics. Only 35.2% of the isolated bacteria from the wounds were sensitive to the prophylactic antibiotics, and only ∼17% in case of clinically significant infections. We found a statistically significant difference in the length of hospital stay between patients with initially colonized samples of burn wounds compared with patients with initial negative samples (p = 0.008). All patients in the cohort survived hospital discharge.

CONCLUSION: Despite common bacterial colonization of acute burn wounds, only ∼10% of the patients developed clinically significant infections, a minority of which were sensitive to prophylactic antibiotics. Our findings indicate the need to refine the antibiotic approach in pediatric patients with minor/moderate burns in our local setting.

PMID:37981486 | DOI:10.1016/j.burns.2023.10.014

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