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Burn patient after burn scar treatment

Pioneers in pediatric burn care

Leading the way in advanced burn care, research and education

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Pediatric Burns

Shriners Hospitals for Children is a global health care system, and is internationally-renowned and respected for its commitment to caring for children around the world. Our expertise in pediatric burn care extends to all levels of burns and burn reconstruction. Specialty care also extends to wound care, scar management and a variety of serious skin conditions. We have a strong history of providing medical care for children across the globe, and responding quickly to tragedies involving children whenever and wherever they occur.

In addition to the Shriners Hospitals for Children locations that treat children with burn injuries, we have medical go-teams ready to assist when disasters and emergencies occur. Our world-renowned burn teams rely on the most up-to-date scientific and clinical research to deliver unparalleled treatment and therapies.

Pediatric burn patient

At Shriners Hospitals for Children, our philosophy is built on family-centered values and compassion. Patients come exceptions. Our goal is to help each and every child live their best life every step of the way. Burn and skin-related support services at Shriners Hospitals for Children are innovative, research-backed and delivered in a way that also fosters emotional well-being and psychological healing.

Find a Location Near You

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22 Locations Across North America

Location Specialties
  • Burn Care
  • Craniofacial and Cleft Lip/Palate
  • Neuromuscular
  • Orthopaedics
  • Orthotics and Prosthetics
  • Pediatric Surgery
  • Spinal Cord Injury
  • Sports Injury and Fractures
  • Therapy and Rehabilitation

Notice: Treatments and services vary by location. Contact nearest hospital for specific details.

Burns and scars

At Shriners Hospitals for Children, we regularly treat all types of burns and skin conditions. No two patients are the same, and we understand that an effective treatment plan is one tailored to fit the child's individual needs. Following is an overview of the types of burns and skin conditions we are particularly adept in treating.

First-degree burns

Also known as superficial burns, first-degree burns only affect the outer, epidermal layer of the skin. While painful, they tend to heal within a few days and generally don't cause scarring.

Second-degree burns

Second-degree burns (also known as partial thickness burns) go deeper, affecting the dermal layers of skin beneath the epidermal. These types of painful burns leave blisters or lesions in their wake. They usually result in some level of scarring, depending on the severity, and heal within 10 to 21 days.

Third-degree burns

Third-degree burns are the most severe and are commonly referred to as full thickness burns. They penetrate all the way down into the subcutaneous tissue, causing dry, leathery injuries and harsh scarring.


In the aftermath of a traumatic injury, residual scarring can take a toll on the self-esteem of a developing child. Shriners Hospitals for Children uses a number of treatment tools to minimize the appearance and symptoms of scars caused by burns, injuries or birthmarks. We leverage skin grafting, laser technology and compression therapy to treat existing scars, as well as prompt interventions to prevent the formation of new scars.

Skin conditions

Shriners Hospitals for Children specializes in a wide array of skin conditions that present characteristics and symptoms similar to burns, which include: Stevens-Johnson syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN), necrotizing fasciitis, and purpura fulminans.

Reconstruction and management

Shriners Hospitals for Children draws on the most innovative and groundbreaking technology and research as inspiration for our specialty care. We have set the standard for burn care and treatment of complex skin conditions. Our interdisciplinary medical teams follow children through their physical growth and psychological development addressing all needs with a wraparound care model. Our comprehensive and individualized care plans may incorporate:

  • Surgical reconstruction: Surgical reconstruction can help in improving function and/or cosmetic appearance. The best surgical option is dictated by the type and severity of the original injury or condition. Whether it's a skin condition the child was born with, a burn, dog bite, illness-related condition, car accident or any other trauma that affects the skin, Shriners Hospitals for Children carefully and compassionately assesses each patient to determine the best path forward.

  • Common surgical interventions for burn patients:

    • Reconstructive surgery
    • Skin grafting
    • Tissue expanders
    • Tissue transfers or flaps
    • Laser treatment
  • Custom garment applications: Compression therapy can go a long way in flattening scars and reducing their appearance. Each custom garment we assign is tailored to the individual child to provide a just-right fit that applies exactly the right amount of pressure. Custom garments are generally recommended for burns that were skin grafted or take longer than 20 days to heal. If custom garments aren't deemed necessary, massaging a wound, skin graft or scar can also help soften and flatten scar tissue.
  • Occupational and/or physical therapy: Interventions like physical therapy or occupational therapy can also promote healing in cases where the injury has impacted the child's gross or fine motor skills.

Conditions, treatments and services provided may vary by location. Please consult with the Shriners Hospitals for Children location nearest you. See zip code search feature to the right.

Shriners Hospitals for Children is one of the world's most respected pediatric health care systems, with 22 locations across the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Telehealth capabilities help our physical locations care for patients from select rural and underdeveloped regions. This secure, interactive video conferencing allows patients from all over the world to see our specialists without having to travel far from home. Additionally, our national and international outreach programs and community clinics reach thousands of children who would not otherwise have access to pediatric specialty care.

What to expect

Our priority is our patients, which is why each and every family is always met with compassion, hope and respect. We understand that many families are navigating complex medical issues, and Shriners Hospitals for Children works hard to make the journey as easy as possible.

Insurance and payment information

Most major insurance providers are accepted; however, insurance coverage is not required for care. Any child under 18 with a medical condition or medical need that is within the health care system’s scope of services, is eligible for care. Shriners Hospitals for Children offers financial assistance to those in need.

Before your appointment

Prior to your first visit, be sure to gather any medical records and documents, assistive technology or adaptive devices that may be relevant to the health care team.

This checklist should be helpful when preparing for your first appointment:

  • List of current medications your child is taking
  • X-rays or other diagnostic images/reports
  • Your child’s primary care and referring physicians' names, addresses, and phone and fax numbers
  • Insurance card and photo ID

Helpful links and information

When it comes to treating burns, scars and complicated skin conditions, Shriners Hospitals for Children is truly on the front lines. Our burn facilities are recognized as verified burn centers by the American Burn Association and the American College of Surgeons. Our pediatric burn teams include some of the world's finest pediatric specialists who are immersed in the latest clinical research and have decades of experience working with children. Our burn care specialists train emerging physicians all over the world through on-site fellowships, participation in burn summits, conferences, academic lectures and authoring numerous publications and textbooks on pediatric burn care.

Our burn care teams are led by innovators in the field, such as: Steven E. Wolf, M.D., chief of staff at Shriners Hospitals for Children ― Galveston, who is the current president of the American Burn Association (ABA); David Greenhalgh, M.D., chief of burns at Shriners Hospitals for Children ― Northern California and president-elect of the International Society for Burn Injuries; Tina Palmieri, M.D., FACS, FCCM, assistant chief of burns at the Northern California Shriners Hospital and member of the American Burn Association Trauma, Burns and Critical Care Board; and by specialists like physical therapist Ingrid Parry, who has been honored by the American Burn Association for her exemplary work in the field.

Shriners Hospitals for Children's commitment to excellence and high-quality care is evident in every patient interaction. We understand that it can be a very frightening and trying time for a family following a burn injury. We are here for you and your entire family. You may be dealing with quite complex medical issues, while also supporting the child who is at the center of it all. We do all we can to create a welcoming, warm atmosphere that invites families to collaborate directly with the health care team and to provide you with a complete understanding of your child’s care plan.

Our focus is on treating the whole child and looking beyond the injury that brought them into our care. The ultimate goal is to promote physical, emotional and psychological well-being at every stage of treatment.

Shriners Hospitals for Children has four national locations that specialize in burn care:

Conditions, treatments and services provided may vary by location. Please consult with the Shriners Hospitals for Children location nearest you. See zip code search feature to the right.

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