Gunshot wounds are becoming progressively widespread in the society. Even though it can affect almost any part of the body, certain areas where vital organs are positioned might a challenge to treat.
The impact produced by the penetrating bullet usually depends on the nature of the bullet, position of the victim when hit, area and the type of tissues involved. For gunshot wounds to the hip and pelvis region, it can involve damage to both bones as well as the internal organs.
Hip and pelvis injuries from gunshot wounds
Gunshot wounds are penetrating injuries that involves the bone as well as the soft tissues associated to the pelvic girdle. Wounds to the pelvis might affect various organ systems.
The penetrating injuries to the pelvis region might damage the abdominal and pelvic organs. Pelvic fractures are quite common which might become complicated with injuries to internal structures such as the urogenital organs, intra-abdominal organs and major blood vessels. The fractures that are likely to occur include different areas and joints of the pelvis and hip such as the ilium, sacral region, acetabulum, sacroiliac joint and ischial tuberosity.
Other injuries to the internal structures can cause damage to the small bowel perforations, urogenital damage, lacerations of the blood vessels and even nerve damage.
For orthopedic injuries, proper wound care is based on the velocity of the bullet and extent of the injury.
Pelvic fractures can result to bleeding and requires immediate medical care. Treatment for the wound is followed by stabilization of the fracture and antibiotics for prophylaxis against infection.
The key points in managing gunshot wound injuries includes bleeding control. The mechanical stabilization might be carried out using sheets, binders or fixation methods.
In case the spinal canal is injured, any retained bullet fragments or neurologic deficits might necessitate surgery. If the femoral nerve is damaged, it is treated using medications and surgical exploration for other possible injuries.
Management of the wound in a specific region is considered if the abdominal organs are injured. Laparotomy is usually carried out if suitable. During the procedure, the abdominal cavity is prepared and any damage to the internal organs is determined and fixed.
Quick Note / Disclaimer
The material posted on this page on hip and pelvis gunshot wounds is for learning and educational purposes only. To learn to properly manage wounds especially from guns, register for a first aid and CPR course with Mississauga First Aid.