Mortality related to gender, age, sepsis, and ethnicity in severely burned children.
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Several studies have noted gender differences in adult mortality related to thermal injury, however, little is published on gender-related outcomes of burn patients 17 years of age or less. The aim of this study was to evaluate the relationships between mortality, gender, prepubertal and during puberty, ethnic origin, and age, with or without identified sepsis in severely burned children. Seven hundred forty-seven children admitted to our burn hospital from March 1985 to January 2005 with burns greater than 40% total body surface area were studied. Mortality associated with identified sepsis, gender, age, and ethnic origin were outcomes of interest. Two hundred sixty (35%) of the patients studied were girls and 487 (65%) were boys. No significant difference could be shown between girls and boys for the number of operations, time from burn to hospital admission, or the presence of identifiable inhalation injury. Nearly 60% of the male nonsurvivors and 48% of the female nonsurvivors in this study had identifiable sepsis at postmortem. The mortality rate was higher in infants and toddlers, age 0 to 2.9 years, compared with children and adolescents, age 3 to 17 years; however, there was no significant difference in rate of mortality between genders, prepuberty versus puberty, those with septic episodes, or ethnic origin. Burn mortality among infants and toddlers, children, and adolescents with greater than 40% total body surface area burns with or without identified sepsis could not be shown to be gender or ethnic origin dependent.
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