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<< An Evidence-Based Approach To Electrical Injuries In Children (Trauma CME)

Case Presentation and Conclusion

A 17-year-old male with electrical burns is brought by EMS to your ED. The EMS provider reports that the patient was climbing up a utility pole when he lost his balance. Reportedly, while he was still in contact with the pole, he grabbed onto a live power line and was thrown about 20 feet to the ground. He experienced a loss of consciousness of unknown duration at the scene. Upon your physical exam, the teenager is alert, oriented, and has bilateral third-degree burns to his hands and wrists. What type of electrical exposure is this? What complications are you concerned about this patient developing? What diagnostic studies should you order? Does he require admission to the hospital?

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