Article Text

Download PDFPDF

Keeping children safe at home: protocol for a case–control study of modifiable risk factors for scalds
  1. P Wynn1,
  2. J Stewart2,
  3. A Kumar1,
  4. R Clacy1,
  5. F Coffey3,
  6. N Cooper4,
  7. C Coupland1,
  8. T Deave5,
  9. M Hayes6,
  10. E McColl7,
  11. R Reading8,
  12. A Sutton4,
  13. M Watson2,
  14. D Kendrick1
  1. 1Division of Primary Care, School of Medicine, Nottingham, UK
  2. 2School of Health Sciences, University of Nottingham, Queen's Medical Centre, Nottingham, UK
  3. 3Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, Queen's Medical Centre Campus, Nottingham, UK
  4. 4Department of Health Sciences, University of Leicester, Leicester, UK
  5. 5Centre for Child & Adolescent Health, Health and Life Sciences, University of the West of England, Bristol, UK
  6. 6Child Accident Prevention Trust, Canterbury Court (1.09), 1 - 3 Brixton Road, London, UK
  7. 7Great North Children's Hospital, Research Unit Level 2, New Victoria Wing, Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK
  8. 8Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Norwich, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Persephone Wynn, Division of Primary Care, Tower Building, University Park, Nottingham NG7 2RD, UK; persephone.wynn{at}


Background Scalds are one of the most common forms of thermal injury in young children worldwide. Childhood scald injuries, which mostly occur in the home, result in substantial health service use and considerable morbidity and mortality. There is little research on effective interventions to prevent scald injuries in young children.

Objectives To determine the relationship between a range of modifiable risk factors for medically attended scalds in children under the age of 5 years.

Design A multicentre case-control study in UK hospitals and minor injury units with parallel home observation to validate parental reported exposures. Cases will be 0–4 years old with a medically attended scald injury which occurred in their home or garden, matched on gender and age with community controls. An additional control group will comprise unmatched hospital controls drawn from children aged 0–4 years attending the same hospitals and minor injury units for other types of injury. Conditional logistic regression will be used for the analysis of cases and matched controls, and unconditional logistic regression for the analysis of cases and unmatched controls to estimate ORs and 95% CI, adjusted and unadjusted for confounding variables.

Main exposure measures Use of safety equipment and safety practices for scald prevention and scald hazards.

Discussion This large case-control study will investigate modifiable risk factors for scalds injuries, adjust for potential confounders and validate measures of exposure. Its findings will enhance the evidence base for prevention of scalds injuries in young children.

This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 3.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt and build upon this work, for commercial use, provided the original work is properly cited. See:

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.