The falling bullets: post-Libyan revolution celebratory stray bullet injuries



Al-Tarshihi MI, Al-Basheer M.


Eur J Trauma Emerg Surg. 2014 Feb;40(1):83-5. doi: 10.1007/s00068-013-0323-1. Epub 2013 Aug 22.


OBJECTIVE: To report our experience with the post-Libyan revolution celebratory stray bullet injuries by falling bullets. METHODS: This descriptive study was carried out during the period from November 2011 to February 2012 at the military Jordanian field hospital in Benghazi-Libya. Twenty-three patients who were injured by falling bullets were enrolled in this study. Intentional and direct bullet injuries due to conflicts were excluded. Demographic data, injured body part, place of injury, timing of intervention, hospital stay, and fatality were described and analyzed. RESULTS: Children less than 14 years of age constituted 65.2 % (n = 15) of the falling bullets victims. Injured body parts were upper and lower limbs (12, 52.2 %), chest (8, 34.8 %), head and neck (2, 8.7 %), and abdomen (1, 4.3 %). Three (13.0 %) patients were diagnosed to have stray bullet injury by radiological investigations without a clinical suspicion. Two (8.7 %) fatalities were reported. CONCLUSION: Celebratory stray bullet injuries are an unusual form of injury not infrequently seen in some parts of the world. Lower limb and chest injuries especially among children are most commonly reported. Focus on prevention through education and weapon use regulations carries the best chance of reducing these injuries.

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Link/DOI: 10.1007/s00068-013-0323-1