Burn scar contracture
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Burn scar contracture refers to the tightening of the skin after a second or third degree burn. When skin is burned, the surrounding skin begins to pull together, resulting in a contracture. It needs to be treated as soon as possible because the scar can result in restriction of movement around the injured area.
Burn scar contractures do not go away on their own, although may improve with the passage of time and physiotherapy and splinting. If persistent the person may need the contracture to be released. Techniques may include local skin flaps (z-plasty)or skin grafting (full thickness or split thickness). There are also pharmacy and drug-store treatments that can be used to help scar maturation, especially silicone gel treatments. Prevention is key. For instance, in the case of a burned hand one would splint the hand and wrap each finger individually. In the instance of a burned neck, hyperextention of the neck (ie. no pillows) during the healing process.
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