Saturday, April 01, 2006

Nailed. A piercing headache, perhaps.

Originally uploaded by Ian__.

Have you had a bad day? Is the hollow, effeminate voice of Daniel Powter reverberating endlessly in your mind? If so, then take heart, dear friend. Just remember it could always be worse -- you could have a four inch steel nail in your head like this guy.

Oh, and if that's not enough to warm your soul, just add this word to your lexicon:




At 7:06 PM, Blogger phoenix said...

Can't say I have ever had a nail in my head but during this season sometimes it feels that way LOL

Million dollar word there Ian!

At 9:51 PM, Blogger NickAntosca said...

What's up, Ian.

This guy didn't die? (I'm assuming they wouldn't do a brain scan or whatever that is on a corpse...) He's walking around with a big nail in his head, Phineas Gage style.

Something really fascinates me about medical anomalies of that sort, people surviving trauma that you simply assume would kill them, or vice versa.

I have this enduring interest in movies where this sort of thing happens...traditional rules of cinema state that a headshot kills and a limbshot is a mildly annoying flesh wound...but there are great moments like in "Seven" where Brad Pitt casually describes a fellow officer being shot in the arm, then dying...or in "Reservoir Dogs" when Mr. Whatever gets shot right in the head, then manages to drive away, muttering nonsense.

In Fires, the thing I wrote a long time ago but that's coming out this winter, I put in a long scene where a character gets shot in the head, survives, and wanders around for a bit seeing familiar things in a somewhat different light.

Sorry to dwell so obsessively on this medical stuff - now to sleep, and then to dream.

At 9:59 PM, Anonymous mena said...

I almost wrote you off. I'm amazed that you have any time at all. I figured you'd make an appearance in Guys and Dolls before updating this. I've been wrong before. You should add weekly updates of the weirdest cases of the week. That'd be exciting.

At 3:27 PM, Anonymous Not a rocket scientist (either) said...

I have a skull series and CT very similiar from a man I saw a few years back in Montana. He was climbing a ladder; his friend was at the top of the ladder holding a "cocked" nailgun hanging at his side. Guy's head contacted the nailgun as he climbed up, there was an accidental discharge and ka-pow!
It was a 16-penny nail, about 3.75 inches long, inserted 1 inch to the right of midline in the parietal region, angled toward the pineal. The nailhead created a little cuff of depressed fracture fragments that got carried in to the level of the dura. Guy was fine except for a little clumsiness in his left foot. I chose not to angio him pre-op based on the entry site and trajectory and lack of blood on CT. I prepped and draped for a big flap but then only opened a small part of it, did a burr hole next to the entry site and craniectomized the bone around the nail. I got some terrific still pictures of its removal. The thing I remember best is his Mom nearly fainting when I gave her the nail, still with that cuff of cranium wedged in under the nailhead. He got married a few months later. His foot improved 75-90%. He never blamed his friend one bit.

At 1:56 PM, Blogger Ian said...

Phoenix -- I can't even tell you how many times I've recently felt like I've had a nail in the head. But I have a two week vacation coming seven weeks.

Nick -- I definitely need to get my hands on Fires when it comes out. After your story with the anesthesiologist serial killer, I'm sure this one has a load of surprises...

Mena -- I had completely written it off myself. Hopefully I'll actually manage to post every few days (or maybe weeks).

fellow non-rocket scientist -- I can't imagine handing somebody a piece of skull! It seems all of our specimens wind up sucked into the black hole that is the pathology department. In any case, it's great that the case turned out so well. Thanks for the comment!


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