Background: Burn injuries in adults can be complicated due to various underlying factors. Of all the co-morbidities complicating wound healing and prognosis of the patient post burn injury, diabetes mellitus is the most common in India. We therefore aimed to explore the epidemiology, interventions, complications, and outcomes in diabetic patients with burn injury.
Aim: To analyze demographic characteristics, clinical and microbiological profile and outcome of diabetic burns patients in comparison with nondiabetic burns patients.
Materials and methods: This study was a retrospective analysis of diabetic and nondiabetic burns patients admitted to Apollo speciality clinics, Vanagaram, a tertiary care facility in Chennai over a period of 3 years. Data such as age, gender, type and degree of burns, percentage of burns and length of stay, mortality rate, infection rate, type of infections, surgical procedures, and medical complications were analyzed in comparison with nondiabetic burns patients.
Results: Among ninety-four burns patients admitted to our hospital over a period of 3 years, 18 patients (19%) were diabetics and 76 patients (81%) were nondiabetics. Mean age of diabetics was 58.2 years (SD-17.1) and nondiabetics was 36.3 years (SD-16.4). Surgical intervention with split skin graft was performed in 50% of diabetics and 48.7% of nondiabetics. Average length of stay of diabetics was 12.6 days and nondiabetics was 16.2 days (p value: 0.334). Diabetic patients with burns were noted to have higher rate of infection (67% vs 61.8%, p value: 0.803) and mortality (44% vs 35.5%, p value: 0.482).
Conclusion: The clinical course is different between diabetic and nondiabetic patients with burns injury. Although length of stay and surgical interventions were not significantly different, diabetes as a comorbidity appears to increase the risk of infections and mortality in patients with burns.