Many excellent reports have been published concerning the care of thoracic wounds during World War II and the Korean conflict, but little has appeared recently about civilian wounds. It is the purpose of this paper to set forth the system by which gunshot wounds of the chest are handled at the Marion County General Hospital and to indicate what results may be anticipated.
During the period 1948-1957, 83 cases of gunshot wound of the chest were treated on the surgical service of the Marion County General Hospital. These cases do not include patients who were dead on arrival or patients who died soon after admission to the emergency ward and were, therefore, never admitted to the surgical service.The cause of wounding was a fight in 31 cases, an attempted suicide in 25, a police action in 19, and an accident in 8. The type of gun was.22 caliber