Children with severe burns: the mental heals together with the scars on the skin

From left to right: dr. Tim Guderjahn (head of the Munich clinic), Dr. Carsten Krohn (senior doctor at the center for children with severe burns at the Munich clinic Schwabing), 10-year-old Luca, Princess Ursula of Bavaria, Dr. Axel Fischer (CEO, Munich Clinic) and Bernd Döpke (Head of BMW Department in Munich). Photo credit: Munich Clinic.

Donations make new laser therapy methods possible for children

It is a cut in the lives of families that can change everything: A serious burn injury leaves scars on the skin and scars in the entire family’s psyche. In Germany alone, around 6,000 families whose children under the age of 15 have to be treated in hospital with severe burns experience this disorder every year. The scars are both a burden and a stigma. In addition to the preventive work, versatile care in a specialized center is all the more important. The smaller the scars and the better the aftercare, the more and faster a whole family’s ailments heal. Scar post-treatment is therefore becoming increasingly important in the care of burn injuries. Since May, an advanced CO2 laser procedure, which is unique in Munich’s children’s clinics and which reduces burn scars in a particularly gentle way, has been used in the pediatric surgery department in Schwabing. The project was made possible by the BMW department’s Advent concert in Munich. Each year, donations are collected for a previously defined project. Everyone helps: the customers and business partners. At the last concert, more than 100,000 euros were donated for children’s surgery and the new laser.

New laser treatment causes less pain than other procedures
“We take care of small patients, some of whom have serious burn injuries. The fact that we can now make scar therapy more bearable for our children is an added value that cannot be quantified,” says Dr. Carsten Krohn, chief physician at the Center for Severely Burned Children at the Munich Clinic Schwabing. Because: In severe burns, cream, massage and wearing a compression garment to reduce scars are often no longer sufficient. Then there are two methods to make the scar flatter and softer – medical needling and the fractional CO2 laser, which is now being developed in Schwabing on the initiative of Dr. Krohn could be purchased with donations. In both procedures, small holes are punched in the scar. However, unlike needling, the laser does not cause bleeding, and blood no longer has to be washed off the skin regularly and painfully. This allows for much more comfortable and sometimes even outpatient follow-up. “Our doctors and nurses provide exceptional pediatric medicine. But it also requires equipment above the standard, which is not refinanced in the health system. We are extremely grateful to BMW for making the purchase possible with their commitment,” says Dr. Axel Fischer, CEO of the Munich clinic.

Donation presentation in the clinic with BMW manager and Princess of Bavaria

Yesterday, Wednesday (August 17), Bernd Döpke (BMW) and Princess Ursula of Bavaria were convinced of the enormous added value of the new laser device for the small patients in the pediatric surgery department of the Munich clinic Schwabing. During a short demonstration in the operating room – a piece of wood acted as a patient – they got an idea of ​​the laser’s high-precision performance. Princess Ursula of Bavaria is patron of the annual BMW Advent Concert – on her initiative, the 2021 concert was held exclusively to benefit the new laser device for pediatric surgery. An overwhelming donation amount of over 100,000 euros was collected in this way. “As a Munich-based company, urban healthcare is particularly important to us. There is no lack of quality in childcare in Munich, but unfortunately there is often a lack of money – our donation is right here and can visibly make a difference,” says Bernd Döpke, head of BMW Munich branch. Princess Ursula of Bavaria adds: “When Dr. Krohn told me of his wish, I set everything in motion immediately. Illness in childhood is particularly tragic, and it is my personal concern to work towards a high level of treatment comfort. A big thank you must go to all the donors and visitors to the concert who made this possible.”

Overall, the purchase of the laser including accessories (such as laser glasses) costs around 200,000 euros. BILD helps eV “A heart for children” also supported. The association supports children in need in Germany and around the world. “Ein Herz für Kinder” supports, among other things, hospitals, schools, daycare centers, social institutions and medical research projects.

Munich Klinik Schwabing: Center for severely burned children

The pediatric surgery department at Munich Clinic Schwabing is specially equipped for children suffering from severe scalds and burns. Here is one of only 19 centers in Germany for severely burned children. The young patients are not only cared for here, but are often accompanied for years with special follow-up as part of a special burn consultation.

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