Gunshot injury: with hemopneumothorax

Case contributed by Bruno Di Muzio


Gunshot assault.

Patient Data

Age: 22-year-old
Gender: Male

CT Abdomen and pelvis (selected images)


Technique: Axial images were obtained through the abdomen and pelvis, without contrast administration. 

Findings: Hemopneumothorax on the left, with a pleural tube located. Lower anterior rib comminuted fracture (probably caused by the bullet). A bullet is located in the posterior chest wall on the left causing strikes artefacts. A second bullet is contemplated on CT scout, but not on the axial images. 

The abdomen and pelvis study is unremarkable. 


Case Discussion

Trauma is the most important cause of hemopneumothorax. This case reflects an injury caused by gunshot which probably entered the thorax by its left anterolateral aspect, causing a rib fragmentation, crossed the lung parenchyma causing the hemopneumothorax and stopped in the posterior chest wall. 

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