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Lessons From Military Surgeries Informed Treatment of Boston Victims
New York Times

BOSTON — For years, Dr. Michael J. Weaver, an orthopedic trauma surgeon, went to meetings of his professional society and heard surgeons from the military describe what they had learned treating blast injuries. Then he would return to his practice at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, where he mostly treated people injured in auto accidents or falls.

All that changed on Monday when victims of the bombings at the Boston Marathon arrived.

“We’ve seen similar injuries, but never of this magnitude,” Dr. Weaver said. “This is completely different.” The military experience, he added, “has been phenomenally helpful.”

It turns out to be an art — and a delicate balancing act — to treat people with blast injuries that can pulverize muscle and rip blood vessels, that can drive pieces of metal into soft flesh and shatter bones. Trauma surgeons call it damage control, and say the military experience showed how important it is.Read the full article

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