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Development of a Postburn Pruritus Relief Protocol

Kim, Yeon, DNP, MSN, RN, CCRN

doi: 10.1097/rnj.0000000000000095

Background Postburn pruritus is a syndrome of stressful symptoms that is pervasive and occurs in over 90% of burn patients and continues for years after the burn has healed. Postburn pruritus is experienced by burn survivors that may require medical management and effective interventions.

Purpose This article shows how to effectively relieve postburn pruritus by developing a postburn pruritus relief protocol.

Design A descriptive literature review was conducted, and relevant empirical articles written during the years 2000–2014 were appraised to create a postburn pruritus relief protocol. Twenty-six of 79 articles were selected using preestablished inclusion criteria: any age group experiencing burn-related pruritus after second- or third-degree burns. Databases were Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, CINAHL, EBSCO, PubMed, the National Guideline Clearinghouse, Google Scholar, and the American Burn Association website.

Conclusions This protocol included both nonpharmacological and pharmacological interventions that have been delineated for use and was developed to apply based on the healing stage: prehealing, healing, and posthealing.

Department of Nursing, California State University San Bernardino San Bernardino, CA, USA

Correspondence: Yeon Kim, Department of Nursing, California State University San Bernardino, 5500 University Parkway, San Bernardino, CA 92407, USA. E-mail: or

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Cite this article as: Kim, Y. (2018). Development of a postburn pruritus relief protocol. Rehabilitation Nursing, 43(6), 315–326. doi: 10.1097/rnj.0000000000000095

© 2018 Association of Rehabilitation Nurses.
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