Transcranial stab wounds: morbidity and medicolegal awareness

Surg Neurol. 1991 Apr;35(4):294-9. doi: 10.1016/0090-3019(91)90008-w.


In this series of eight patients with transcranial stab wounds, the importance of classifications of such wounds as a separate traumatic entity is stressed. The mechanisms of neuronal and vascular damage in these wounds are discussed and are found to be specific from other head injuries. Cerebral injury by stabbing is largely restricted to the wound tract. Frontal stabs (two cases) are accompanied by the least morbidity and mortality, while temporal stabs (four cases) are more commonly fatal. In transorbital stabs (two cases) carotid-cavernous fistulae resulted. Early recognition, administration of antitetanus serum and antibiotics, and debridement may minimize complications.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Brain Injuries* / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain Injuries* / mortality
  • Brain Injuries* / therapy
  • Humans
  • Jurisprudence
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Radiography
  • Skull / diagnostic imaging
  • Wounds, Penetrating* / diagnostic imaging
  • Wounds, Penetrating* / mortality
  • Wounds, Penetrating* / therapy