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When should I call the doctor about my child’s burns?

Call your child’s doctor if:

  • The dressing on the burn gets wet or falls off.
  • You see signs of infection at or near the burn, such as increased redness; swelling; pain; bloody, yellow or green drainage (clear drainage may be normal for an open burn or when blisters pop); or a bad smell.
  • Your child does not feel better after taking medicine for pain.
  • Your child develops a fever (temperature over 100.4°F orally or rectally).
Contact your doctor or go to the emergency room (ER) for any burn to the face, hands, feet or groin. Any burn to a major joint, or any circumferential burn (which is one going completely around a limb) should be treated as well. Also, call your doctor for any burn that does not blanch when pressed, any burn involving a source other than contact (such as electrical or inhalation) or any burn over a large surface area.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.