Facts About 3rd Degree Burns

3rd Degree BurnsFacts About 3rd Degree Burns


3rd degree burns are probably among the most painful conditions that you may experience. Such a burn would mean that it has penetrated the deepest layers of the skin.

According to UWHealth, third Degree Burns appear dry or leathery, white, brown, maroon or black.  These burns are not sensitive to pain.  Third degree burns often take greater than 3 weeks to heal or need skin grafting.  These burns are treated at home only if they are quite small.


Source: UWHealth


So what causes such a terrible burn? There are some things that can be pointed at as the culprit behind a 3rd degree burn. Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin provided some of the causes of a third degree burn. These are:


  • a scalding liquid
  • skin that comes in contact with a hot object for an extended period of time
  • flames from a fire
  • an electrical source
  • a chemical source


Symptoms may include:


  • dry and leathery skin
  • black, white, brown, or yellow skin
  • swelling
  • lack of pain because nerve endings have been destroyed


Large third-degree burns heal slowly and poorly without medical attention. Because the epidermis and hair follicles are destroyed, new skin will not grow.


Treatment for third-degree burns will depend on the severity of the burn. Burn severity is determined by the amount of body surface area that has been affected. The burn severity will be determined by your child’s physician. Treatment for third-degree burns may include the following:

  • early cleaning and debriding (removing dead skin and tissue from the burned area). This procedure can be done in a special bathtub in the hospital or as a surgical procedure.
  • intravenous (IV) fluids containing electrolytes
  • antibiotics by intravenous (IV) or by mouth
  • antibiotic ointments or creams
  • a warm, humid environment for the burn
  • nutritional supplements and a high-protein diet
  • pain medications
  • skin grafting (may be required to achieve closure of the wounded area)
  • functional and cosmetic reconstruction


Source: Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

The best thing for you to avoid such a burn is to be more cautious in everything that you do and to steer clear from the possible causes of a 3rd degree burn.



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