In estimating small areas of burns, it is traditionally taught that the patient's palm is 1% of the body surface area. Whether the palm means the palmar surface of the whole hand or palm excluding the fingers, has not been very clear and is a source of confusion to many junior doctors. The ATLS teaching has been in contradiction to the evidence from literature and hence we undertook a study to examine the evidence and practices regarding this issue. It was done through a literature search, telephonic interviews and a review of Web-pages related to burns area estimation. The results highlighted the existing confusion on the topic and the need for educating junior doctors.