Page last updated at 12:28 GMT, Wednesday, 26 May 2010 13:28 UK

Brighton beach sunburn baby discharged from hospital

Brighton beach on Sunday
The baby is now "doing fine" after suffering serious sunburn

A five-month-old boy taken to hospital with burns over 40% of his body after spending a day in the sun on Brighton beach has been discharged.

The child was with his 29-year-old mother who was visiting the south coast from Plumstead, south London on Sunday, one of the hottest days of the year.

Sussex Police said the baby was "doing fine" after being released from the Royal Sussex County Hospital.

Officers are investigating the case, but said no arrests had been made.

Dehydration risk

The child was taken to hospital by ambulance after police community support officers (PCSOs) intervened when they saw the baby suffering from sunburn.

Insp David Derrick said detectives were working with the local authority in London to consider any child protection concerns.

The PCSOs found the baby and his mother following comments from a concerned member of the public.

"Within minutes of them being alerted and foreseeing the possible danger to this child they were able to take him and the mother to a safe place and arrange medical support," said Insp Derrick.

Temperatures on Brighton beach reached 25C (77F) on Sunday.

A burns specialist from The Queen Victoria Hospital (QVH) in East Grinstead, West Sussex - who was consulting with the Royal Sussex - said the boy's injuries could have been potentially life-threatening.

Consultant Baljit Dheansa said the baby's skin showed signs of blistering.

He explained that the danger of blistering was that it could lead to the loss of body fluids.

In a five-month-old baby, this could ultimately lead to risks of dehydration, low blood pressure and kidney failure.

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