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J Trauma. 1996 Sep;41(3):460-1.

Transaxial gunshot injuries.

Author information

1
Department of Surgery, Chaim Sheba Medical Center, Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv, Israel.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To define the clinical characteristics of gunshot injuries across the truncal midline (transaxial injuries).

DESIGN:

A retrospective case-control study

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Analysis of a consecutive series of 223 patients with gunshot injuries to the torso treated at one trauma center. Sixty-three patients with transaxial injuries were compared to 148 patients with unilateral bullet trajectories.

MAIN RESULTS:

The incidence of cardiac (8%), vascular (17%), and spinal (29%) injuries and the mortality rate (29%) were significantly higher among the 63 patients with transaxial injuries compared with 148 patients with unilateral injuries. Initial operative access to the wrong visceral cavity (10%), missed injuries (14%), and early reoperations (19%) were also more common in the transaxial group.

CONCLUSIONS:

A transaxial bullet trajectory identifies a distinct injury pattern associated with a high incidence of major visceral damage, intraoperative misadventures, and very high mortality.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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