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Original Article
April 1957

Therapy of Severely Burned PatientsEleven Years' Study at the University of Minnesota

Author Affiliations


From the University of Minnesota Hospitals and the Minneapolis General Hospital.; Associate Professor of Surgery, University of Minnesota, and University Chief of Surgery at Minneapolis General Hospital (Dr. Hitchcock).

AMA Arch Surg. 1957;74(4):485-499. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1957.01280100003001

Death still claims a high percentage of seriously burned patients. Where 55% or more of the body surface is severely burned, the mortality rates are in the range of 85% in most clinics. Owing to a better understanding of fluid and electrolyte balances in patients with severe burns, these critically injured people often survive the initial "shock" period of the postburn state only to succumb with sepsis, hepatic failure, cardiac complications, or other types of medical emergencies in the later postburn period.

We are immediately aware that further advances must be made in effecting earlier, more complete grafting of larger burned areas, with an over-all reduction of the "chronic," or reconstructive, phase of the problem. In a recent report four American medical centers failed to show any improvement in mortality of burned patients in the 15%-35% body-surface burn group, and also in the 70%-100% body-surface burn group, when they compared

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