BACKGROUND: Burn is one of the most common illness in primary care. Most burns are partial skin thickness burns. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the use ofSilvadene (silver sulfadiazine) ointment (antibacterial agent) and DuoDERMR (artificial syntheticmaterial). METHODS: The subjects of this study were 46 patients with partial skin thickness burns who had visited a general hospital burn clinic from May 1, 2002 to June 30, 2002. They were randomly assigned to the silvadine ointment or DuoDERMR group. The patients were evaluated for pain, the number of dressing change, the ease of dressing application and removal, limitation of activity, comfortableness, satisfaction with the appearance, sleep disturbance, treatment cost, and the number of days for complete epithelialization. RESULTS: DuoDERMR treated burns had a fewer dressing change (3.19 times vs 5.36 times), less time for dressing change (4.13 min vs 6.26 min) and less cost (P<0.01). But there was no statistical difference in the number of days for complete epithelialization (P=0.197) and it depended on the size of the wounds (P=0.005). The cost of treatment was related with the number of dressing change (P=0.000). CONCLUSION: Treatment methods had no effect on duration of treatment but artificial synthetic material was shown to reduce the time for dressing and the cost.