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Blast Injuries: What Clinicians Need to Know

Dec 22, 2008

Sixteen blast injury fact sheets are available from the CDC, ranging in topics from crush injuries and burns to the treatment of children and older adults. Each fact sheet contains sections on clinical presentation, diagnostic evaluation, management, and disposition.

In an instant, an explosion or blast can wreak havoc; producing numerous casualties with complex, technically challenging injuries not commonly seen after natural disasters such as floods or hurricanes. Explosives are the weapon of choice for most terrorists and according to the 2007 Institute of Medicine Report, The Future of Emergency Care in the United States Health System: Emergency Medical Services at the Crossroads, explosions are the most common cause of injuries associated with terrorism.  As part of its pre-event preparedness, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC), Terrorism Injuries Information, Dissemination and Exchange project is working to reduce the impact and improve management of injuries from terrorist bombings through the dissemination of blast injury treatment fact sheets for health care providers.  Sixteen blast injury fact sheets are available, ranging in topics from crush injuries and burns to the treatment of children and older adults.  Each fact sheet contains sections on clinical presentation, diagnostic evaluation, management, and disposition.  The fact sheets are available in multiple languages and formats. For more information or to download the fact sheets, please visit: www.emergency.cdc.gov/BlastInjuries.