Annals of African Medicine
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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 21  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 237-243

Incidental blast injuries to the hands of hunters in suburban Africa

1 Department of Surgery, Federal Teaching Hospital, Ido-Ekiti; Department of Surgery, Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti, Nigeria
2 Department of Surgery, Federal Teaching Hospital, Ido-Ekiti, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Olakunle Fatai Babalola
Department of Surgery, Federal Teaching Hospital, PMB 201, Ido - Ekiti /Afe Babalola University, Ado -Ekiti, Ekiti State
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/aam.aam_113_20

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Background: Civilian blast injuries are common during celebrations and festivities. In the intervening times, civilian nonterrorist blast events are rare. The aim of this report is to highlight the increasing occurrence of blast injuries to the dominant right hand of hunters and the ensuing crippling consequences. Methodology: A review of incidental blast injuries to the hand among hunters was conducted. The case files, clinical photographs, and radiographs of consecutive cases of blast injuries presenting to our unit over 3½ years were studied. Result: Six patients had incidental blast injuries to the hand within the period. All the patients were males and hunters by profession. The age range was 30–49 years. The dominant right hand was involved in all the six cases with high-energy soft tissue and bony injuries. Five patients had staged soft tissue coverage while the sixth patient, after initial resuscitation, discharged against medical advice due to economic constraints. Multiple joint stiffness and significant disability occurred in all the affected hands. None of the patients represented for secondary procedures. Conclusion: Incidental blast injuries to the hands of local hunters are lifestyle threatening. The dominant right hand is invariably involved with attendant crippling socioeconomic consequences. Meticulous clinical care and methodical operative intervention are primal to hand salvage.

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