The Loch Ness Mobster ;-) (curuchamion) wrote in little_details,
The Loch Ness Mobster ;-)
curuchamion
little_details

Little girl getting shot in the leg

Uh... hi. First post. I hope I'm doing everything right.

American Midwest, 1960s. I've got a man and a four-year-old girl who have just escaped from an underground-lair-type place and are running away from pursuers who are shooting at them with carbines. The man is carrying the girl on his left hip (to leave his right hand free to shoot back). A bullet hits the girl's right thigh about halfway down, breaks the femur but doesn't exit the thigh. They evade the pursuit, and the man has to give the girl emergency medical care.

The man has medical/pre-med training (I can fudge quite a bit on how much), but isn't a full-fledged doctor. He has a Swiss Army knife, matches, his clothes (suit and tie), a handkerchief, and a chocolate bar, but no sterile bandages and no way to boil water. They're hiding in the woods, so he has access to sticks for splints. He's out in the boondocks and has no idea where the nearest medical facility is.

I checked the 1966 Merck Manual on "wounds", but they assume a hospital setting. I also read the posts tagged "gunshot wounds" on this comm and found a lot of helpful info. I still have several questions, which I can't quite figure out how to Google.

#1: (the most important) Would it be preferable to dig out the bullet and/or set the leg right away, or just put on a temporary splint and bandage so they can concentrate on looking for civilization? If the latter, at what point (if at all) would it become preferable to debride the wound and/or set the break in unsanitary conditions rather than waiting any longer in hopes of getting to a hospital?

#2: Given the flexibility of a four-year-old's bones, what are the chances of the bullet causing a clean break versus a greenstick fracture or some such? If it would probably not be a clean break, how much of a difference does that make in the answer to question #1?

#3: Do gunshot wounds start to hurt right away? In other words, would the man (in good physical shape and running flat out, if it matters) know immediately after he felt the bullet hit that it wasn't actually lodged in his back, or would there be a minute or so when he might not be sure? He's been shot several times in canon, so he's got a bit of experience with how it feels, if that makes a difference.

Many thanks for any help!
Tags: ~medicine: injuries: gunshot wounds
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