A bio-degradable synthetic membrane to treat superficial and deep second degree burn wounds in adults and children - 4 year experience.

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INTRODUCTION: A new bio-degradable synthetic membrane was recently introduced to treat second degree burns in adults and pediatric patients.

OBJECTIVE: To assess complications and outcomes using this absorbable synthetic membrane to treat second degree burns.

METHODS: 229 burn patients, 138 pediatric, with superficial and deep second -degree wounds, treated with the absorbable synthetic membrane (Suprathel®, Polymedics, Denkendorf, Germany) were included in this study. Patients were treated under anesthesia or moderate sedation. The wound bed was prepared by using either rough debridement or dermabrasion excision. After hemostasis, the membrane was applied to the wound with an outer layer dressing of fatty gauze, bridal veil, absorptive gauze and an ACE® wrap. The outer dressing was removed every one to four days, depending on exudate, in order to closely follow the wound through the translucent membrane and fatty gauze layers. After complete epithelialization, the dressing separated and could be removed. The study focused on the need for subsequent grafting, healing time, patient pain level, hypertrophic scarring and rate of infection.

RESULTS: All wounds in this study that were treated with Suprathel® healed without grafting. The average TBSA (Total Body Surface Area) was 8.9% (1%-60%). Average time to healing was 13.7 days for ≥ 90% epithelialization with 11.9 days for pediatric patients versus 14.7 days for adults. Throughout the treatment period, the average pain level was 1.9 on a 10-point scale. 27 patients developed hypertrophic scarring in some areas (11.7%). Average Length of stay (LOS) was 6.9 days. The rate of infection was 3.8% (8/229). Failure or progression to full thickness in part of the wounds was 5.2% (12/229).

CONCLUSION: In treating second degree burn wounds, this membrane provides a simple, effective solution alternative with good outcomes and less pain than conventional and previously studied treatment options in the same institution. Fewer dressing changes and easier overall management of the wounds contribute to its favorable profile.





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Pediatrics | Plastic Surgery | Surgery




Department of Surgery, Network Office of Research and Innovation

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