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Rule of nines for burns in babies and young children

Baby with areas of body marked to show percentages of surface area

The size of a burn for a baby or young child can be quickly estimated by using the "rule of nines." This method divides a baby's body surface area into percentages.

  • The front and back of the head and neck are 21% of the body's surface area.
  • The front and back of each arm and hand are 10% of the body's surface area.
  • The chest and stomach are 13% of the body's surface area.
  • The back is 13% of the body's surface area.
  • The buttocks and genital area are 6% of the body's surface area.
  • The front and back of each leg and foot are 13.5% of the body's surface area.

Current as of: November 15, 2021

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
William H. Blahd Jr. MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
H. Michael O'Connor MD - Emergency Medicine
Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine