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Turk Neurosurg. 2009 Jan;19(1):73-6.

Gunshot injuries due to celebratory gun shootings.

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  • 1Ankara University, School of Medicine, Department of Neurosurgery, Ankara, Turkey.


Traditional shooting with guns often occurs and leads to unwanted gunshot injuries in areas where celebrations are held. Such injuries have been classified as celebratory gun shooting injury in the international disease classification system.


An 8-year-old female patient presented with respiratory arrest. The heartbeats normalized upon cardiopulmonary resuscitation. On physical examination, the only pathological finding was a skin defect measuring 1 x 1 cm on the midline and located 2 cm in front of the coronal suture. Cranial CT revealed a bone defect of 0.5 cm in the area 2 cm in front of the coronal suture on the midline, tetraventricular and extensive subarachnoid hemorrhage and parenchymal hematoma in the frontal area. It was initially thought to be a gunshot injury; however, on cranial CT, no bullet fragments or bullet exit hole was observed. A cervicothoracal direct graph was obtained and an image that might have been compatible with a bullet core was detected at Th 2-3 vertebra level.


Although gunshot injuries are generally well- known, this may not be a very familiar topic for neurosurgeons. The primary aim of this report is to emphasize that a bullet round randomly fired into the air ascends in reverse direction to gravity and after reaching a zero point, it returns to the ground at a high velocity that facilitates its penetration into the skull according to a principal physics law.

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