Friday, November 1, 2013

Neck injury from a broken saw

Not really bizarre, but unpleasant: a sharp piece of metal gets embedded in a guy's neck and has to be removed by surgeons. A 30-year old man presented to an emergency department in Mumbai, India, with a relatively small bleeding wound on his neck. He had been working with a saw when a fragment broke off and hit him. 

The entry wound was about 0.5 cm x 0.5 cm in size, with swelling and tenderness of the surrounding tissues. The piece of metal had penetrated so deeply that it was not visible at all. An X-ray revealed a metallic foreign body embedded in the patient's neck. There was some bleeding, but not much; an USG of the neck showed no injury to the vessels. The patient was immediately taken into surgery, where the nasty-looking piece of metal (see photo below) - almost 4 centimeters long - was located and removed under general anesthesia. He recovered with no complications.

One can't help thinking that this guy was extremely lucky - no arteries, tendons or nerves damaged.

Bleeding entry wound on the patient's neck. Note the swelling. Image from: Deshmukh et al. (2012)

Metallic foreign body visible on radiogram. Image from: Deshmukh et al. (2012)

Saw fragment after removal. Image from: Deshmukh et al. (2012)

Source: Deshmukh S, Halwai O, Sharma A, Dabholkar J. (2012) Metallic foreign body in the neck: case report. Otolaryngol Pol. 66(1):64-5. doi: 10.1016/S0030-6657(12)70753-9.


  1. świetny blog, lubię takie klimaty, pozdro aga... :)