In ballistic wounds the tissue along the path of the projectile experiences transient displacements resulting in what is known as the temporary wound cavity. The motion of the tissue caused by the formation of the temporary cavity gives rise to a low pressure pull that sucks air and airborne debris into the wound. The latter could be a significant mechanism for bacterial and particulate contamination of projectile wounds that should be explored in detail since it can lead to infection or delayed wound healing. In order to better understand the flow of air into the temporary cavity and how it relates to particulate entry into the wound, a methodology to visualize the air flow into perforating projectile wounds was proposed and explored using an extremity surrogate. The proposed approach was only intended for qualitative observations and comparisons and was implemented in a very rudimentary fashion to determine its usefulness. The experimental setup used and visualization results corresponding to the air flow at the entry and exit regions of perforating projectile wounds using 0.45-in and 0.22-in caliber round nose lead projectiles and a PERMA-gel lower extremity surrogate are presented.

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