Third-Degree Burn at 10x Magnification

The recipient of a third-degree burn should be provided with emergency medical care as soon as possible, but there are certain procedures that can be followed to decrease the risk of complications before professional help is available. Unlike first- or second-degree burns, third-degree injuries should not be submerged in cool water since this may increase the intensity of shock to the patient’s circulatory system. No ointments, sprays, or home remedies, such as petroleum jelly or butter, should be applied to the wound, and clothing adhered to the burned area should not be removed. To protect the tissues exposed by the burn, a loose, sterile dressing may be applied, or if the damaged area is large, a clean sheet may be draped over the affected parts of the body. If the injury is to the lower extremities, the legs should be elevated. In cases of hand burns, the injured appendage should be elevated higher than the heart. Also, the breathing and other vital signs of the recipient of a third-degree burn should always be closely monitored and CPR administered if necessary.

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