Article Title

Working towards holistic scar assessment and improved shared decision making in global burn care


Cutaneous burn scars impact various aspects of life. Scar treatment is mainly evaluated on scar characteristics. Consensus is needed on which other outcomes to capture, ensuring they are relevant to patients, clinicians, and researchers. The aim of this study was to identify, discuss and analyze outcomes related to cutaneous burn scarring, incorporating the voice of patients and views of healthcare professionals. For this, a Delphi process consisting of two survey rounds and a consensus meeting was initiated. Burn scar-related outcomes were identified from an existing comprehensive list of 100 outcomes by an international panel of patients, healthcare professionals and researchers. Fifty-nine outcomes were identified from the Delphi process as related to scarring (≥60% votes). Outcomes less impactful in relation to scar outcomes included psychosocial issues, sense of normality, understanding of treatment, costs and systemic issues. To represent a holistic assessment of outcomes related to cutaneous burn scarring, this Delphi process established a battery of outcomes currently included in scar quality assessment tools, and an expanded set of less frequently considered outcomes. Future work in this area must include the patient voice from developing countries. This is essential to identify globally applicable outcomes related to scarring.

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