Clinical Challenges in Burn Surgery: Electrical Burns - Part 2 of 2

EP. 661Sep. 21, 202326:27
While on your burn rotation, the emergency department calls due to a patient who may have been injured at his job site, coming in contact with a high-voltage line. Join Drs. Tam Pham, Clifford Sheckter, Alex Morzycki and Jamie Oh as they discuss the work-up, management, resuscitation, and subsequent complications and reconstruction for electrical injuries. 

- Dr. Tam Pham: UW Medicine Regional Burn Center
- Dr. Clifford Sheckter: Stanford Medicine, Santa Clara Valley Medical Center
- Dr. Alex Morzycki: UW Medicine Regional Burn Center
- Dr. Jamie Oh: UW Medicine Regional Burn Center

Learning Objectives:
- Review the epidemiology and common mechanisms for electrical injuries 
- Understand the impact of electrical injuries on different organ systems, including skin, musculoskeletal, cardiac, neurologic, and renal systems
- Be able to guide initial work-up and resuscitation of acute electrical injuries including upper extremity compartment evaluation and release
- Recognize possible long-term complications of electrical injuries and their subsequent management

1.     Daskal Y, Beicker A, Dudkiewicz M, Kessel B. [HIGH VOLTAGE ELECTRIC INJURY: MECHANISM OF INJURY, CLINICAL FEATURES AND INITIAL EVALUATION.]. Harefuah. 2019 Jan;158(1):65-69. Hebrew. PMID: 30663297.

2.     Pawlik AM, Lampart A, Stephan FP, Bingisser R, Ummenhofer W, Nickel CH. Outcomes of electrical injuries in the emergency department: a 10-year retrospective study. Eur J Emerg Med. 2016 Dec;23(6):448-454. doi: 10.1097/MEJ.0000000000000283. PMID: 25969345.

3.     Davis C, Engeln A, Johnson EL, McIntosh SE, Zafren K, Islas AA, McStay C, Smith WR, Cushing T; Wilderness Medical Society. Wilderness Medical Society practice guidelines for the prevention and treatment of lightning injuries: 2014 update. Wilderness Environ Med. 2014 Dec;25(4 Suppl):S86-95. doi: 10.1016/j.wem.2014.08.011. PMID: 25498265.

4.     Zemaitis MR, Foris LA, Lopez RA, et al. Electrical Injuries. [Updated 2023 Apr 9]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Available from:

5.     Leversedge F, Moore T, Peterson B, Seiler J; Compartment syndrome of the upper extremity. J Hand Surg. 2011; 36(4):P544-559. doi:

6.     Arnoldo B, Klein M, Gibran NS. Practice guidelines for the management of electrical injuries. J Burn Care Res 2006, 27(4): 439-47 

7.     Pilecky D, Vamos M, Bogyi P, et al. Risk of cardiac arrhythmias after electrical accident: a single-center study of 480 patients. Clin Res Cardiol 2019, 108(8): 901-908

8.     Soar J, Perkins GD, Abbas G, et al. European Resuscitation Council Guidelines for Resuscitation 2010 Section 8. Cardiac arrest in special circumstances: Electrolyte abnormalities, poisoning, drowning, accidental hypothermia, hyperthermia, asthma, anaphylaxis, cardiac surgery, trauma, pregnancy, electrocution. Resuscitation 2010, 81(10): 1400-33

9.     Kaergaard A, Nielsen KJ, Casrtensen O, Biering K. Electrical injury and the long-term risk of cataract: A prospective matched cohort study. Acta Ophthalmologica 2023, e88-e94

10.  Richard F. Edlich, MD, PhD and others, TECHNICAL CONSIDERATIONS FOR FASCIOTOMIES IN HIGH VOLTAGE ELECTRICAL INJURIES, The Journal of Burn Care & Rehabilitation, Volume 1, Issue 2, November-December 1980, Pages 22–26.

11.  Lee DH, Desai MJ, Gauger EM. Electrical injuries of the hand and upper extremity. JAAOS-Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. 2019 Jan 1;27(1):e1-8.

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