You may be at greater risk for a work-related burn injury if you work at Plant Vogtle in Waynesboro or the battery acid plant in Burke County. Regardless of the severity, a burn injury can be extremely painful.
You may know that your burn injury is serious just by looking at it, but you may not know what, specifically, makes it so severe. The severity of a burn injury often depends on two main factors.
Your skin consists of several different layers. The subcutis is the deepest layer, the dermis is the middle layer, and the epidermis is the outermost layer. The deeper that the burn injury extends and the more layers it affects, the more severe it is.
A full-thickness burn extends all the way down through the epidermis and the dermis to affect the subcutis and possibly the tissues underneath, e.g., muscles, tendons or bones. Also called a third-degree burn, this is the most severe type of burn injury. A partial-thickness burn extends down through the epidermis but only affects part of the dermis layer underneath. This is a less serious injury also known as a second-degree burn.
The least serious type of burn injury is a superficial, or first-degree, burn that only affects the epidermis.
The severity of your burn injury also depends on how widespread it is. For example, a partial-thickness burn is generally less serious than a full-thickness burn. However, if partial-thickness burns cover at least 10% of the total body surface area, the resulting injury is severe.
Severe burn injuries can cause complications. You may be at greater risk for infection, and the injury may provoke an inflammatory response that sends you into shock. These complications can be life-threatening.