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  1. Ian K Maconochie, Deputy Editor

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Firearms figures—is life getting more dangerous?

This retrospective study has data on firearm injuries from the Traumatic Audit and Research Network (which includes in-hospital deaths and severely injured patients) matched with data from the Office for National Surveys which provides information on prehospital and hospital deaths from 1990 to 2007/8 (see page 10). While US data have shown an increase in deaths over time, there has so far been a lack of information to inform the veracity of UK media speculation of increasing morbidity and mortality. This paper suggests that there are significant regional differences relating to age and that there are gender-related risks of death. These outcomes vary depending on whether or not the firearm injuries are self-inflicted or the result of being assaulted (eg, young men attend hospitals more commonly with assaults). The authors discuss the injury prevention and training implications of the data.

Can ultrasound help to solve the LRTI?

If the thoracic CT scan is the ‘gold standard’ for diagnosing pneumonia, then positive chest x-rays provide agreement for only 65% of cases (see page …

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