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Toxicology. 1997 Jul 25;121(1):17-28.

The pathology of primary blast overpressure injury.

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Department of Respiratory Research, Division of Medicine, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Washington, DC 20307-5100, USA.


Primary blast injury occurs in civilian and military detonations and from the firing of weapon systems. The pathology of primary blast injury has been reported for the last 70 years and has primarily been limited to descriptions of gross pathology and histology. Commonly accepted tenets have not been confirmed as blast overpressure experiments in enclosures and with multiple detonations have been conducted. Organ systems other than the ear and the lung are playing a greater role in injury definition and research importance. This paper is an overview and update of the current understanding of the pathology of primary blast injury.

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