Mortality following combined burn and traumatic brain injuries: An analysis of the national trauma data bank of the American College of Surgeons

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1 Scopus citations


Background: Severe burn and traumatic brain injuries (TBI) lead to significant mortality, and combined burn-TBI injuries may predispose towards even worse outcomes. The purpose of this study was to investigate the mortality of patients with burn, burn with non-TBI trauma, and combined burn/TBI to determine if combined injury portends a worse outcome. Methods: We obtained the National Trauma Data Bank from 2007 to 2012, identifying 32,334 patients with burn related injuries, dividing this cohort into three injury types: BURN ONLY, BURN with TRAUMA/NO TBI, and BURN with TBI. For each patient, demographic data was obtained, including age, gender, presence of trauma, TBI, or inhalation injury, burn total body surface area (TBSA), Glasgow Coma Scale, Injury Severity Score, and mortality. Multivariable logistic regression was performed. Results: Age, gender, and TBSA were similar across the three injury groups, but the incidence of inhalation injury was doubled in the BURN with TRAUMA/NO TBI (15.4 %) and BURN with TBI (15.3 %) groups when compared to the BURN ONLY (7.2 %) group. Mortality differed across injury categories after adjusting for age, TBSA, and inhalation injury. Increased mortality was seen in BURN with TRAUMA/NO TBI versus BURN ONLY (OR = 1.27 [1.06, 1.53]) and was higher when comparing BURN with TBI versus BURN ONLY (OR = 4.22 [2.85, 6.18]). BURN with TBI also had higher mortality when compared to BURN with TRAUMA/NO TBI (OR = 3.33 [2.30, 4.82]). The logs odds of mortality also increased with increasing age, TBSA and presence of inhalation injury. Discussion: This analysis of the NTDB suggests that mortality following burn-related injuries may be higher when burn injury is combined with TBI when compared to burns with other trauma, even after correcting for age, TBSA, and inhalation injury. Further clinical and laboratory research is needed to validate these findings and better understand how to optimize combined TBI and burn injury treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
StateAccepted/In press - 2020


  • Burn
  • Mortality
  • Traumatic brain injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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