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A practical formula for fluid resuscitation in acute paediatric burns in a low resource setting: A pilot study

  • NL Allorto
    Correspondence
    Corresponding author.
    Affiliations
    Greys Hospital, Department of Surgery, Pietermaritzburg Metropolitan, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa

    University of KwaZulu Natal, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa
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  • SL Wall
    Affiliations
    Edendale Hospital, Department of Surgery, Pietermaritzburg Metropolitan, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa

    University of KwaZulu Natal, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa
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      Highlights

      • Fluid resuscitation is challenging in low resource settings.
      • Pilot study to evaluate safety of a new protocol.
      • Practical protocol appears safe and reasonable.

      Abstract

      Background

      Appropriate fluid resuscitation of acute burn injury is critical and there are recognized challenges with fluid resuscitation, including those with relevance to low resource settings. We developed a practical protocol that guides burn resuscitation and sought to evaluate the safety of our modified resuscitation formula through a small pilot study that particularly addresses the problems we have experienced in a low resource setting.

      Methods

      Children with burns more than 15% total body surface area admitted within 24 h of injury to Edendale Hospital between 1 June 2021 and 31 August 2021 were included. The resuscitation formula used was 2 mls of Ringers Lactate per bodyweight in kilograms per% total body surface area (TBSA) given over 24 h and adjusted according to urine output. Data analysed included age, weight, mechanism, TBSA, hours post burn at presentation to hospital, total fluid given in the first 24 h of admission, total urine output in the first 24 h of admission, number of fluid adjustments made during the first 24 h and complications related to fluid resuscitation.

      Results

      Ten children were included. The median age was 3 (IQR 2–5) years old, with a mean weight of 14.9 (SD 5.07) kilograms, a median TBSA of 17.4 (IQR 16–26)%, presenting at a median of 12 (6.5–18) hours post burn injury. Mechanism of burn was scald in all cases, with 9 being hot water and hot food in one. In the first 24 h a mean of 2.05 (SD 0.58) mls/kg of fluid was received with a mean urine output of 1.66 (SD 0.57) mls/kg/hr.

      Conclusion

      The results of this pilot study to evaluate the safety of our protocol seem reasonable. It is limited by the lack of larger injuries as well as adult patients and a larger prospective study is pertinent.

      Keywords

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