Effect of Post-Hospital Discharge Follow-up on Health Status in Patients with Burn Injuries: A Randomized Clinical Trial
Background: Patients with burn injuries still face various burn-related challenges after being discharged from the hospital. Hence, a follow-up program for such patients is essential. The present study aimed to evaluate the health status of burn victims after 1.5 months follow-up.
Methods: The present randomized clinical trial was of a pretest-posttest design, carried out in Kermanshah (Iran) from July 2016 to September 2017. A total of 117 participants were recruited out of which 86 were included in the analysis. The participants were randomly assigned into two groups, namely the intervention group (N=42) and the control group (N=44). All participants were evaluated both at the time of hospital discharge and at 1.5 months post-discharge. The follow-up plan for the intervention group included home visits, telenursing, and referral to specialists or health education centers. To evaluate the physical and psychological status of the participants, five different instruments were used; namely the Burn Specific Health Scale-Brief (BSHS-B), the General Health Questionnaire-28 (GHQ-28), the Brief Pain Inventory (BPI), the Vancouver Scar Scale (VSS), and the Visual Analogue Scale (VAS). All statistical analyses were performed using the SPSS software (version 17.0). Data were analyzed using the Chi-square test, independent t-test, and paired t-test. P<0.05 was considered statistically significant.
Results: The mean score of the BSHS-B questionnaire at both the time of discharge and 1.5 months post-discharge follow-up for the control and intervention groups was 61.22±19.07, 57.14±18.92; 83.70±24.73 and 105.16±29.17, respectively. There was a significant difference between the groups at 1.5 months post-discharge follow-up (P<0.001). At 1.5 months, the VSS score was 5.16±1.68 and 6.77±3.46 for the intervention and control groups, respectively. The GHQ-28 score was 28.69±12.39 and 40.79±16.20 for the intervention and control groups, respectively. The VAS and BPI scores of the control group were 5.56±3.11 and 21.93±29.25, respectively. For the intervention group, these scores were 4.85±3.49 and 15.61±27.47, respectively. There was a significant difference between the groups as to the GHQ and VSS scores (P<0.05). However, no significant difference was noted in the BPI and VAS scores (P<0.05).
Conclusion: Health status, psychological status, and scar management were improved due to post-discharge follow-up. However, burn patients required continued care for pain, psychological health, and itching problems.
Trial Registration Number: IRCT2016110630712N
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Publisher: Vice Chancellor for Research, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences
pISSN: 2322-2476 eISSN: 2322-4835
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