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HEAD.

Exenteratio Cranii. Some hitherto unrecorded effects of high-velocity bullets (Swiss rifle), when delivered from the immediate vicinity, are worthy of note because of the miraculous phenomena ensu ing, and because of their medico-legal import. An account of three cases is here rendered in which the firing distances of seven centimetres and less resulted in penetrating gunshot wound of the skull ; and said wounds, though small, in one instance was associated with total evisceration and instant death, and in two other cases, while much of the brain was massed about the en trance and exit wounds, recovery set in. Exenteratio cranii is characterized by expulsion en masse in greater or less extent of intact brain from the calvarium. It is maintained that neither the expansion of the powder gases nor the increased hydrostatic pressure offer the right accounting for this condition. In the fatal the brain, in toto, was found at a distance of thirty centi metres from the corpse torn off at the medulla. There was ex tensive fissuring of the skull, and two large segments of bone lay some distance from the corpse. This injury was accidentally inflicted by a private stationed in the rear of the victim, and all these statements were legally confirmed. Where the extent of brain traversed is small, the course of the bullet and its forces are tangential, and, though the firing distance was no more than a few centimetres, the issue was not fatal to life. The cases are too few to afford a reasonable explanation, and only similar re peated observations on the living will account for this phenomena. —Beitriige zur klinischen Chirurgie, Band xxix, Heft 2.

brain and distance