Unusual shotgun injury Gas blowout of anterior head region

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During a 6-month period, we encountered two examples of tight contact wounds of the temple region which were associated with ovoid, fairly regular, perforating wounds of the skull and overlying skin. These wounds were located between the eyes with the upper border near the glabella and the lower border near the level of the lower eyelids. There was no evidence that these wounds were entry wounds and in both cases the projectiles were still within the cranial cavity. Therefore, they were interpreted as gas blowout wounds. No similar cases have been found in the literature. Law enforcement personnel and pathologists should be aware of this rather rare blowout type of shotgun injury since it may be subject to various misinterpretations, including that of an entry wound.

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