If you have suffered burns to your body, there is a high likelihood that you will be getting extensive and ongoing care for the long term to help your skin naturally heal and avoid problems with infection. While most people assume that this must mean a burn victim will have to spend most of their time as a patient in the hospital, some burn centers actually offer outpatient care because around the clock attention is not what is needed beyond a certain point. If your doctors have recommended you follow up with outpatient care after leaving the hospital, you are bound to have a few questions. Here are a few of the most common questions and the answers you will want to know.
Under what circumstances will outpatient care be necessary as a burn patient?
In a lot of cases, burns to certain areas of the body can take a long time to fully heal. This is especially true if you have had surgeries or skin grafts to help your skin redevelop. You may not have to stay in the hospital for a long duration, but your wounds may need professional attention if they are extensive, cover large areas of your body, or you are at high risk of developing an infection. In these situations, your doctor may prefer that you come into an outpatient care facility for wound dressing and assessment on a regular basis.
How many times do burn patients usually have to go for treatment every week?
The number of visits required to the outpatient care facility will depend on several different factors. In most situations, doctors will prefer that you visit the outpatient care facility at least a few times a week, but it can also be more–even daily in special cases. How often you will have to be treated will rely on:
- How well your body is healing
- What types of prior treatment you have had
- The size of your wounds
- The amount of pain you are dealing with
- Whether you have someone at home to help you with wound care
Do you have to set up appointments for outpatient care?
This will depend on the outpatient care center where you have to go for treatment. Some outpatient care facilities are much more flexible and can allow patients to stop in for treatment whenever they can make it in. However, in most cases, you will have to schedule appointments or your physician will set up the appointments for you.