Children with sensorimotor deficits: A special risk group

Roque J. Ramirez, L. G. Behrends, P. Blakeney, D. N. Herndon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Children with spina bifida, cerebral palsy, mental retardation, developmental delays, and seizure states are handicapped with sensorimotor deficits, including gait or coordination instability, temperature insensitivity, and mental simplicity. These handicaps make this distinct and unpretentious population more susceptible to lethal burns. A 30-year review was conducted in a pediatric burn center to examine the relationships between pediatric sensorimotor deficit and burn injury. Of the 4874 acute burn admissions, 66 children were identified with preexisting sensorimotor deficits. Data indicate that children with sensorimotor deficit are more prone to burn injury from both their physical impairment and poorly supervised environments. In addition to extended hospitalizations, these children bear significantly higher mortality risks. Had the special supervisions and protection required by such handicapped children been provided, 80% of the burn injuries could have been prevented. Results emphasize that the future of these special children with sensorimotor deficits relies on health care providers playing a greater role in educating parents and caregivers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)124-127
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Burn Care and Rehabilitation
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • General Nursing
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Rehabilitation
  • General Health Professions


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