Aerobic exercise capacity after burn injury in children and adolescentsin the Netherlands

Disseldorp, L., van Brussel, M., Takken, T., Beerthuizen, G. IJ. M., van der Woude, L., Mouton, L. J. & Nieuwenhuis, M., 23-Apr-2015, Rehabilitation: Mobility, Exercise and Sports: Proceedings of the 5th international State-of-the-Art Congress. Mouton, L. J. (ed.). p. 339-341 3 p.

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Abstract Purpose: Burn injuries have a major impact on the patient’s physical and psychological functioning. The
consequences can, especially for pediatric burns, persist long after the injury. Loss of physical fitness after burns seems
logical, considering inflammatory and stress responses and a long period of bed rest. However, knowledge on the
possibly affected levels of physical fitness is limited and pertains only to children with exceptionally severe burns. To
extend our knowledge on the Dutch population, this study aimed to determine levels of aerobic exercise capacity in
children and adolescents with a wider range of burn characteristics. Methods: Children and adolescents aged 6 to 18
years were invited to participate in the current cross-sectional descriptive study if they had been admitted to one of the
dedicated Dutch burn centers between 0.5 and 5 years ago with a burn injury involving at least 10% of the total body
surface area [% TBSA]. As part of a larger study, aerobic exercise capacity was assessed with a cardiopulmonary
exercise test using a cycle ergometer and gas analysis in a mobile exercise lab, parked near the children’s homes.
Primary outcome parameter was aerobic exercise capacity (VO2peak [ml*min-1]) and scores were compared with age and
sex matched reference values. Results: The study population consisted of 22 children and adolescents (12 boys; 6-18
years; 10-41% TBSA). In the majority of children, results on aerobic exercise capacity showed no significant deviation
from reference values. The mean Z-score was -.23 ± .92 and the mean score relative to predicted values was 97.3% ±
12.8. One subject however, did show pathologically low outcomes on VO2peak [ml*min-1]. No trends were found indicating
an effect of extent of burn or time post burn on aerobic capacity in this group. Conclusions: Aerobic exercise capacity is
adequate at 1-5 years after burn injuries of 10-41% TBSA in the majority of children and adolescents in the Netherlands.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRehabilitation: Mobility, Exercise and Sports
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 5th international State-of-the-Art Congress
EditorsLeonora J. Mouton
Number of pages3
ISBN (Electronic)978-90-75823-87-5
Publication statusPublished - 23-Apr-2015


  • burns, children, exercise tolerance

ID: 19557836