Background: Despite advances of the treatment of burns have decreased the letality rate and improved the quality of life of burned patients, infectious complication remain a major cause of death in burn victims. Objective: The purpose of this study was to determine the principal infectious complications and predictive factors of infection in burned patients. Method: Two-hundred and seventy-eight patients consecutively admitted to the Burn Unit of Hospital Regional da Asa Norte, during 2004, were included in this prospective study. All infections were registered, starting at the day of admittance. Only burn wound infections already present on admission were excluded. Infections were grouped in three major classes: blood stream infection (BSI), pneumonia and burn wound infection. The diagnosis of infection in burn patients is based on clinical and laboratory parameters. The criteria for infections were mainly based on those given by the Center for Disease Control, Atlanta, USA. Statistical methods used were test t, Chi-square analysis with Yates´correction and logistic regression analysis. Results: Twohundred and seventy-eight patients with burn injuries, consecutively admitted to the Burn Unit of Hospital Regional da Asa Norte, during 2004, one-hundred and eleven female and 167 male patients were included in the study. Median age for the 278 patients was 24 years (range 1-82). Median total body surface area burn was 14% (range 1-100%). Onehundred and fifty-two (54.7%) patients had flame injuries, 96 (34.5%) were scald injuries, 25 (9%) electrical injuries and 5 (1.8%) chemical injuries. The median length of stay was 12 days (range 1-86 days). Fourteen (5.0%) patients died during their stay in the burns Unit. Eighty-six patients had in total 148 infections, whereas 192 patients were not infected. Fifty-seven patients had 72 episodes of bloodstream infection (BSI). Eighteen (6.5%) patients developed pneumonia. Forty-nine (17.6%) patients had burn wound infections. After multivaried analysis, the most suitable predictive factors of infection in burned patients were total body surface area burn, length of stay, isolation of fungi on culture from swabs of burn wounds and surgical procedures. Conclusions: The majority of infections were bloodstream infections, followed by wound infections and pneumonia. The appropriate knowledge of predictive factors of infectious complications in burned patients permit estimate the probability of infection using the logistic regression equation. The use of this equation may provide better guidance for the diagnostic and therapeutic handling of these complications in burned patients.
Keywords: Burns. Infection. Bacterial infections