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July 8, 1968

Survival of Burned Patients

JAMA. 1968;205(2):117. doi:10.1001/jama.1968.03140280071031

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To the Editor:—  The recent article by McCoy et al, "Discriminant Function Probability Model for Predicting Survival in Burned Patients." (203:644, 1968), purports to enable one to determine prognosis in severe burn cases, but does not take into account improvements in burn survival that are made possible by the control of sepsis with large doses of antibiotics (200:939, 1967).Assuming that the statistical methods of McCoy et al are valid, the accompanying Table shows the difference in survival as predicted by their discriminant function model and the survival achieved at St. Mary's Burn Center, Milwaukee, with a prophylactic regimen of the highest tolerated doses of antibiotics and complete exposure.We point this out to avoid undue anxiety or pessimism that may discourage maximum treatment, especially in the case of older persons, who, as the comparison Table shows, have a much better chance of survival than McCoy et al