WITHIN THE LAST 30 years the mortality from burns and scalds has fallen. However, this change is largely relatable to the reduction of the death rate from burns and scalds covering 60% or less of the body's surface, and the more especially from those covering less than 50% (Table 1).
Although burns covering more than 65% of the body are still regularly but not always fatal, the fact that, on a graph, the relationship of mortality to the size of burn is ogival is reason to believe that ultimately even burns covering 90% to 100% of the body will not always be lethal.
Traumatic shock is no longer a significant contributing factor to the mortality rate. Even the shock attending thermal injuries covering 50% to 85% of the body is successfully treated by the provision of a sufficient quantity of a balanced solution of sodium salts, such as Hartmann's solution.*