The third and fourth degrees of burns are most dangerous for human life and health, but the latter is diagnosed much less frequently. Consider in detail, under what conditions and from what you can get a third-degree burn, what is fraught with, how to give first aid and how long the treatment will last.
Classification of burns by degrees
As already mentioned, burns are usually classified by degrees, depending on the depth of damage to the skin.
- First degree burn. After contact with the influencing factor, the skin slightly reddens and swells. The injury does not require special treatment and heals on its own after 5–7 days. The scar from the burn does not remain.
- Second degree burn Redness and swelling is accompanied by swelling of the upper layer of the skin and the formation of bubbles filled with yellow liquid. When a bubble is pierced, a bright red layer of skin is seen, and touching it causes severe pain to the injured. The probability of wound infection is high, so the healing period is approximately two weeks.
- Third degree burn. It is characterized by the cessation of tissue vital activity (necrosis), the wound is covered with a crust of gray or brown color.
- The fourth degree of burns. The most severe and deep damage to the skin. Characteristic features are the blackening or charring of the injured area, in certain cases involving the bones in the process. The recovery period is long, deep scars remain at the site of exposure.
If a person has suffered a cervical region or joints with fourth-degree burns, in the process of scar formation, physical activity will be disturbed.
Third degree burn forms
In medicine, it is common to separate third-degree burns.
Upon receipt of the injury of this form, the patient has a complete defeat of the epidermis. The dermis is affected partially and shallowly. The main part of the basal layer stops its activity and dies. The germ layer, which is responsible for the repair of skin cells, is partially damaged. The remaining, deep layers, fully retain their functional abilities.
In the injured area, the patient feels almost no touch. Enhanced tactile contact is accompanied by increased pain reactions of the body. For accurate diagnosis requires constant monitoring by the doctor and monitoring the regenerative abilities of the skin.
The lesion is characterized by complete necrosis of the skin in the injured area. The cessation of the activity of the subcutaneous tissue joins the skin damage indicated in degree 3-А.
In the clinical picture, doctors note the complete absence of pain and tactile contact in the patient. The process of blood circulation and metabolism of the skin is impaired.
The concept and clinic of thermal burn
Thermal burns occur when the skin comes into contact with high temperatures of various origins. In case of severe damage, tissue necrosis and severe redness occur. The surface of the site of exposure is dry or wet, depending on the nature of the thermal exposure. On contact with steam or boiling water, the patient will have wet necrosis. The skin becomes red-yellow or red-brown in color and becomes covered with blisters filled with liquid. The nature of the damage can be compared with the process of melting the skin tissue.
In contact with hot objects, such as iron or iron, dry necrosis occurs. The skin at the site of impact is covered with a dense crust, has a dark color, in severe cases it can become black. The wound borders are clearly visible. All degrees of thermal burn heal with the subsequent formation of scars on the tissues. In exceptional cases, while maintaining even the smallest areas of the epithelial layer, skin regeneration is possible.
The concept and clinic of a chemical burn
In a person who has suffered a chemical burn, treatment should be carried out according to the intended purpose and after the patient is examined by doctors. The defeat of the skin of this type can be obtained by contact with aggressive substances, such as alkalis or acids. If a person has received a third-degree burn of a chemical nature, all layers of the skin in the injured area undergo necrosis. The top layer of the wound is covered with a dark, hard, immovable crust. Tactile contact is not sensitive.
Establishing the final diagnosis regarding the extent of damage is possible only after rejection of dead areas. The bulk of burns is diagnosed in the third degree.
For burn burns, the treatment and wound healing process is long. Approximately three weeks is necessary for the complete exclusion of the scab. As a result, deep scars are formed at the site of injury.
The main signs of third-degree burns are changes in the surface layers of the skin from a natural color to a dark red tint. In places where the epithelium has completely stopped its vital activity, the skin color becomes black, which indicates tissue necrosis. The place of contact with the influencing factor is hyperpigmented.
Depending on the nature of the burn, bubbles may appear in the injured area, filled with liquid, thick crusts of dark brown color, erosions and ulcers.
A third degree burn of category “A” is classified as superficial, category “B” is a deep defeat.
Clinic of burns of the third degree
In most cases, patients who have received a third degree burn, in addition to the main signs of injury, express complaints about the deterioration of health. With a global lesion, body temperature can rise, there is a feeling of nausea with bouts of vomiting.
On the border of the injured area of skin, a small tissue growth is formed, which forms approximately 2 months after the burn. This is due to the epithelization of damaged skin and the growth of a new layer. Its edges are convex, granular.
If a burn in diameter does not exceed two centimeters, its independent healing is permissible, however, it is necessary to create conditions to prevent infection, as well as intoxication of the organism. Such treatment with the use of antiseptic preparations is performed in the clinic.
With the defeat of the growth layer, doctors note the formation of scars.
How to give first aid to the victim
It is not possible to cure a third degree burn by yourself. Therapeutic procedures are represented by a set of measures that help relieve pain and restore the skin.
Because of these features, injuries to the victim should be delivered as soon as possible to the burn center or call for emergency care. In about 80% of clinical cases, the patient needs surgery.
The first aid complex is based on the following algorithm:
- Isolation of the affected factor;
- with a small area of damage, the injured area should be raised upwards if possible;
- put a sterile napkin in place of the burn.
It remains to call an ambulance.
It should be noted that a patient who has received a third-degree burn is strictly forbidden to give painkillers. This will only aggravate the process of collecting anamnesis and add ambiguity to the clinical picture.
Third degree burn treatment
If the patient is taken to a burn center, it guarantees him timely and proper medical care. Patients with such injuries are treated in a hospital. Self-treatment of third-degree burns is strictly prohibited.
Paramount doctors remove pain syndrome. To do this, use anesthetic drugs narcotic group. The surface of the wound is regularly sprayed with an antiseptic, the remaining drugs are injected intravenously according to the developed scheme.
A third degree burn is treated only in a comprehensive manner, therefore, it is prescribed for anesthetics:
- The means blocking an attack of anaphylactic shock.
- Glucocorticosteroids, which suppress the inflammatory process.
- Regular change of dressings.
- Preparations of the sedative group.
- Medicines, eliminating post-traumatic shock.
- Droppers for removing toxins.
- Droppers to fill the lack of fluid.
If the lesion is large-scale, a third-degree burn is required for surgical treatment in several stages. How much injury is treated depends on the area of the lesion. After 20 days, the process of reparation of the skin will be noticeable, complete healing lasts about three months. In case of extensive damage to the skin by chemical means or by thermal action, the scar from the burn remains always and has the appearance of a scar.
Invalid relief measures for third-degree burns
If people are close to the victim, they should know a number of actions that will not help the patient and will aggravate the course of treatment.
So, when burns are prohibited:
- wash the site of exposure with cold water, antiseptic and other medications;
- impose frozen food or ice on the affected area;
- remove clothing from the victim;
- give any drugs.
The only correct action that others can take for the victim is to transport him to the clinic as soon as possible or to call the ambulance.