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Article
February 1955

LOCAL TREATMENT OF BURNS CAUSED BY MOLTEN TAR: Experimental Study

AMA Arch Surg. 1955;70(2):218-220. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1955.01270080064011
Abstract

AT A RECENT surgical conference at the Edward J. Meyer Memorial Hospital, the question of how best to treat patients burned by molten tar was raised. Two answers were given to this question: One group maintained that the tar should be removed from the burn site; the other group held that the tar should not be touched, that it would slough off by itself with the underlying damaged tissue without lengthening the healing process or interfering with it.

We used in this experiment a modification of the treatment outlined by Allen and Koch (1943), who suggested sterile petrolatum gauze strips, gauze fluffs, and pressure over the burn site supplied by an elastic roller bandage. This method eliminated dead spaces and prevented the loss of much plasma fluid.

In our procedure we used, in addition to the pressure bandages, thick plaster casts as suggested by Levenson and Lund (1943). However, our

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