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question about projectile composition

Dr Timothy Hardcastle dr.tchardcastle at absamail.co.za
Sun Aug 31 05:25:16 BST 2008


No hard published data, but my experience ove the years has been that if
the bullet is in the soft tissue it undergoes a foreign body encapsulation
and this is faily benign. Where there may be a problem  is where there is
contact with either CSF, intraoccular fluid or joint space fluid as here
electrolysis can occur with lead or copper poisoning.

See the bit on the main trauma.org site about bullet removal - this should
help you too.

Dr T C Hardcastle
M.B., Ch.B. (Stell); M. Med. (Chir) (Stell); FCS (SA)
Principal Specialist Trauma Surgeon /
Honorary Lecturer UKZN Dept Surgery
Deputy Director - IALCH Trauma Service
> Hello again all, In the news today I saw that the army is studying the
> longterm effects of shrapnel left in the bodies of soldiers. It made me
> think of all the GSW fragments I have seen left in patients over the
> years. The standard missile composition I understand to be copper jacketed
> lead. Also common hollow point and softpoint projectiles have no covering
> at all. Does anyone know of the longterm health effects of tihs either in
> civillian studies or anecdotes? What about projectiles with tungsten? Does
> location in the body have an effect on outcome? Look forward to the input
> from the list. thanks again,Mike
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