Jim Miller, Jr. (jmillerjr@LSFCU.ORG)
Tue, 13 Jun 1995 12:19:40 EST-5
In reply to:
>1) Stop the burning process!
> This means stop, drop and roll if clothing is in flames. After
>the flames are out, you may need to douse smoldering embers of
>clothing with water. DO NOT remove any clothing that may be stuck to
> Note that butter, lard, first aid cream, shaving cream, Grandma's
>secret potions or condiments are listed in the instructions above.
>Someone could have an adverse reaction to any of those items,
>including the development of a nasty infection. Burns obviously
>compromise the integrity of the skin and adversely affect its ability
>to prevent infection. Administration of foreign (to the body)
>substances can hinder the healing process, and will prolong the
>recovery period if an infection develops. Unless you are a licensed
>physician, or someone licensed to prescribe medications, you are
>exceeding the limits of your training and setting yourself up for a
This is the same as #1 above. The way the skin heals a burn is that the heat
needs to be released from the skin. Any ointment that prevents air from
contacting the skin is going to make the burn worse by containing that heat(this
continues the burning process). Pretty simple thermodynamics tells us that heat
is transferred from the skin through the air which cools the skin. The
blistering in severe burns furthers this purpose by the bodies own fluids being
used as conductors for that heat. Please note that putting ice on a burn will
not speed up the process at all, and only cool water (preferably sterile) should
be used to rinse the burn before applying a loose sterile dressing and seeking
professional medical attention.
While it may cause a cooling sensation, shaving cream is probably not a really
good solution for burns. A cool(but not COLD) wet dressing would be far better.
Another former EMT and Camp Medical Officer
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City