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Research Papers

# An Archive of Skin-Layer Thicknesses and Properties and Calculations of Scald Burns With Comparisons to Experimental Observations

[+] Author and Article Information
N. N. Johnson, Z. I. Helgeson

School of Engineering, University of Saint Thomas, 2115 Summit Avenue, Saint Paul, MN 55105-1079

J. P. Abraham1

School of Engineering, University of Saint Thomas, 2115 Summit Avenue, Saint Paul, MN 55105-1079jpabraham@stthomas.edu

W. J. Minkowycz

Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60607

E. M. Sparrow

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Minnesota, 111 Church Street, SE Minneapolis, MN 55455-0111

1

Corresponding author.

J. Thermal Sci. Eng. Appl 3(1), 011003 (Mar 10, 2011) (9 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4003610 History: Received September 24, 2010; Revised January 25, 2011; Published March 10, 2011; Online March 10, 2011

## Abstract

A numerical model has been constructed to assess the depth of injury incurred when skin is exposed to heated water. The model includes an extended duration that occurs when clothing, saturated with hot water, is kept in contact with the skin after the direct exposure has ended. The model takes data from a broad summary of literature, which examines the ranges of reported tissue thicknesses, tissue thermophysical properties, and blood perfusion. Water temperatures ranging from $60°C$ to $90°C$ and total exposure durations up to 110 s were modeled. As expected, longer durations and elevated temperatures lead to a greater extent of tissue injury. For lower values of temperatures $(60°C)$, burns range from mild (0.1 mm) to severe (2.2 mm) depending on the exposure duration. On the other hand, for higher exposure temperatures $(90°C)$, all durations led to burns that extended at least halfway through the dermal layer. As expected, burn depths with intermediate temperatures fell between these ranges. Calculated values of tissue injury were compared with prior injury reports. These reports, taken from literature, reinforce the present calculations. It is seen that numerical models can accurately predict burn injury as assessed by clinical observations; in fact, the calculations of burn injury presented here provide more information for the appropriate treatment of burn injuries compared with visual observation. Finally, literature values of a number of skin-layer thicknesses, thermophysical properties, and burn-injury parameters were collected and presented as an archival repository of information.

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## Figures

Figure 1

Tissue layers

Figure 2

Tissue temperature results for Twater=60°C, total exposure time=10 s

Figure 3

Tissue temperature results for Twater=60°C, total exposure time=20 s

Figure 4

Tissue temperature results for Twater=60°C, total exposure time=110 s

Figure 5

Tissue temperature results for Twater=90°C, total exposure time=10 s

Figure 6

Tissue temperature results for Twater=90°C, total exposure time=20 s

Figure 7

Tissue temperature results for Twater=90°C, total exposure time=110 s

Figure 8

Distribution of injury parameter corresponding to a 60°C water temperature and exposures of 10 s, 20 s, and 110 s

Figure 9

Distribution of injury parameter corresponding to a 70°C water temperature and exposures of 10 s, 20 s, and 110 s

Figure 10

Distribution of injury parameter corresponding to a 80°C water temperature and exposures of 10, 20, and 110 s

Figure 11

Distribution of injury parameter corresponding to a 90°C water temperature and exposures of 10 s, 20 s, and 110 s

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