Objective To compare psychological difficulties experienced during the initial acute hospitalization and the last follow up visit for children with electrical injuries (EI) and children without electrical injuries (non-EI). We hypothesized that children with electrical burns would have different psychological outcomes. Methods This retrospective study compared emotional and cognitive functioning of EI patients and a matched group of survivors of other burns. Results Medical records of 67 patients with and without EI were reviewed. For the EI group, the mean age at injury was 12.6 ± 3.9 years, the mean age at follow up was 15.5 ± 4.6 years, and mean TBSA 32 ± 21%. For the Non-EI group, the mean age at injury was 12.4 ± 3.9 years, the mean age at follow up was 14.5 ± 4.7 years, and mean TBSA 32 ± 21.5%. During the acute hospitalization, a significant difference was found between the groups in the area of neuropathic pain (Chi-square tests p < 0.011). Individuals with EI were more likely to have acute stress disorder/post-traumatic stress disorder as well as amnesia of the accident than the controls; however, this did not reach statistical significance. No differences were found between the groups in other psychological areas. Follow up information from the last documented psychology/psychiatric visit revealed an equal number of patients experienced anxiety disorders, depression, grief, behavioral problems, and cognitive difficulties. Conclusions Some differences were evident between the groups immediately after injury; however, long term outcomes were similar.
- Electrical injury
- Psychological outcome
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Emergency Medicine
- Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine