Burn Injury Statistics: 11 Burn Facts You Might Not Know About


A burn is an injury involving tissue damage from overexposure to heat or radiation. There are several types of burns, ranging in severity from minor sunburn to destruction of the affected area. The following burn injury statistics will help you understand this complex type of injury, what can cause it, and how serious a burn can be.

Are Burn Injuries Common?

Burn injuries are relatively common, though many don’t result in a visit to a doctor or a hospital. Some important facts about burns and how common they are include:

  • About 400,000 burns received emergency medical treatment in 2021 in the U.S.
  • Men are roughly twice as likely as women to be admitted to a burn center
  • Almost three out of four burn injuries occur in the home.

These facts only account for reported burn injuries. In the U.S. alone, there may be hundreds of thousands or even millions of unreported burn-related injuries that are minor enough not to receive medical attention. For example, few people get medical attention for a sunburn.

How Can Burn Injuries Happen?

There are several ways to suffer a burn injury. You could accidentally touch a metal pot while cooking with protection or spill hot coffee on yourself, for example. The following burn injury statistics reveal how injuries happen:

  • Almost half of burn injuries are caused by direct contact with fire or flame, such as while cooking, using a fireplace, or lighting candles.
  • Nearly one-third of burn injuries are caused by scalding water or other hot liquids, like coffee.
  • Chemical burns are the least common type of burn, representing only about 1 in 30 admissions to burn centers.

How an injury occurs matters because different types of burns require different types of treatment. The details surrounding when you suffered a burn will be relevant to your doctor and may be relevant to a lawyer if you file a legal claim.

What Are the Potential Impacts of a Burn Injury?

The impact of burn injuries ranges from mild redness to permanent scarring. Similarly, the treatment for a burn injury could be as trivial as running it under cold water or as impactful as multiple surgeries. Consider these statistics that demonstrate the possible impacts of burn injuries:

  • The World Health Organization estimates approximately 180,000 people die each year from burns.
  • According to the National Library of Medicine, 75% of deaths from burn injuries are due to sepsis caused by infection.
  • The average cost of medical treatment for third-degree burns is over $1 million.
  • Third-degree burns are most commonly treated with skin grafts, which usually require multiple surgeries.

Recovery time from a burn injury depends on how severe the injury was and how it was treated. Even a minor burn can take over a week to heal if you don’t receive any treatment for it. However, if you run cold water over the injury and put some burn ointment on it, the pain and redness may disappear in about 24 hours.

This disparity matters the most for severe burns. Some burns are so severe that they can’t heal naturally and require medical assistance. On the other hand, slightly less severe burns can fester for months or longer without medical assistance.


Can I Get Help Paying for Medical Treatment for a Burn?

If another party’s negligence caused your burn, you may be able to file a personal injury claim against them to get compensation for the cost of any medical bills and related expenses for your burn injury.

When Should I Contact a Doctor After a Burn Injury?

It is best to get professional medical attention for any type of burn injury. Even mild burns can be more severe than you realize, and almost every type of burn can potentially get infected if not properly treated. Even a bad sunburn is worth seeking medical attention for.

With chemical burns, regardless of how mild the injury seems at first, you should always get immediate medical care. These types of injuries are nearly impossible to treat at home and can worsen quickly.

Furthermore, if you need to pursue a lawsuit, you will typically be able to obtain more money if you get medical attention immediately. Doing so produces records that show how serious your injuries were at the moment they occurred.

What Type of Damages Can I Get From a Burn Injury Lawsuit?

There are several types of damages a burn injury lawyer may be able to secure for you from a lawsuit, including compensation for:

  • All medical bills
  • Ongoing therapy after the injury has healed
  • Lost wages due to the injury
  • Pain and suffering

Your attorney will explain what types of damages you are eligible to pursue and how much you can expect to receive during your free consultation.

How Much Does a Burn Injury Lawyer Cost?

Personal injury attorneys work on contingency. This means that their fee is a percentage of the money that they get for you. It also means that you won’t be charged anything if the lawyer isn’t able to get you compensation for your injuries.

Furthermore, personal injury lawyers provide free consultations and case evaluations. During this consultation, you will be able to ask questions and learn about your best options going forward.

Contact The Moore Law Firm to Learn More About Burn Injuries

Have you or a family member suffered a serious burn injury due to the careless actions of someone else? You may be eligible for compensation for that harm. The dedicated personal injury team at The Moore Law Firm can answer all your questions about burn injuries and protect your legal rights.

Contact us to schedule a free consultation with a skilled Cincinnati burn injury attorney today.

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If you have been injured or have lost a loved one as a result of another person's negligence, you deserve to be fully compensated for your losses. The simple fact is that you should not be forced to pay the price for another person's careless or reckless actions.