Burn and Wound Care
The Saint Elizabeth Regional Burn and Wound Care Center is committed to leading research that will advance care for burn and wound patients. Saint Elizabeth is a founding member of the American Burn Association Multi-center Trial Group. Working collectively with Academic and Private Burn centers across the United States, the Multi-center Trials Group of the American Burn Association is a multidisciplinary group committed to advancing burn care through collaborative research.
Here are some research projects Saint Elizabeth researchers are pursuing in an effort to help those they care for today and in the future.  
Body Image in Burn Patients
Perception of Body Image Changes by the Burn Patient - At a recent State of the Science meeting for burns, one of the biggest concerns identified for burn survivors was facial scarring and their personal acceptance into society.  At the Saint Elizabeth Regional Burn Center Investigators are interested in trying to learn how the patient and their families have accepted their “new image”.  Investigators are looking at indicators of acceptance and evaluating whether these indicators exist in the home of the patient pre-burn or post-burn.  With this information they hope to not only help the burn victim physically, but mentally and spiritually as well.
Oral Care for Burn Patients
The Saint Elizabeth Regional Burn Center is the only burn center in the United States with a dentist as a member of the American Burn Association.  Working with Dr David Voigt, MD and Dr Zijun Hao, MD, Dr. Brian Burgess, DDS, has presented internationally on the results of the Oral Cavity and Dental Care of the Burn Patient.  There have been multiple articles regarding significantly limiting the spread of infection via good oral hygiene for burn and intensive care (ICU) patients. All articles agree on the value of good oral hygiene in these especially-vulnerable patients, yet have little direction as to how to proceed with this research. Currently Investigators at Saint Elizabeth are gathering data in a prospective study to determine if the burn/ICU patients’ oral condition is similar or different from the normal standards of care. Or are they identifying the differences in the oral care needs between burn/ICU patients and conventional hospitalized patients?

Identifying Wound Patients Who Will Continue Their Care
Use of Medical Literacy Score to Predict Compliance in Wound Care Patients

Patient non-compliance in continuing their care is a problem that is perceived by health care providers who care for patients with chronic wounds.  Investigators are trying to learn if it is possible to predict which wound care patients will be compliant based upon a medical literacy score obtained from “The Newest Vital Sign™” a bilingual (English and Spanish) screening tool that identifies patients at risk for low health literacy.  The question being asked is: “is the lack of compliance in chronic wound patients secondary to lack of the patient’s ability to understand medical instructions”.  Looking at patients treated at the Saint Elizabeth Regional Wound Care Center, data is being analyzed to determine if a “cut off” score for medical literacy can predict compliance and/ or wound healing.