David Lagoro Kitara, Judith Aloyo, James Henry Obol, Denis Arony Anywar
Burns are a common cause of accidental deaths and morbidity in children in the developing countries. Young children and the elderly are at greater risks and they suffer disproportionate mortality and morbidity. The commonest cause of burns in children in Gulu was due to hot water and porridge pulled over. This study was conducted to find out the epidemiology of burns in the post-conflict Gulu, Uganda. A cross-sectional study was conducted in the surgical ward of Gulu Hospital from January 2009 to December 2010. The socio-demographics, sites of injuries and causative agents were obtained and described from questionnaire on patients’ records. Ethical approval was obtained from the administration of the Hospital. Burn patients (n=115) were admitted for various types of burns, 64.3% were children and 4.4% for >50 years. The clinical type of burns and time of occurrence were significantly associated with the age of the patient (χ 2 = 17.72, p-value = 0.041) and (χ 2 = 38.09, p-value = 0.002) respectively. 21.6% patients were offered first aid that could lead to burn wound infections. Burns is a common public health problem among children of Gulu and although they were numerically few, they comprised a patients’ group that often required considerable resources because of the need for repeated operations, hygienic precautions, treatment of infections and supportive care to patients and their families.
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