RENO, NV - “She had an obvious cranial wound on her scalp that looked like it was large and complex and then based on the CAT Scan we saw that she had a large blood clot that needed to be evacuated immediately,” says Dr. Chris Demers a Neurosurgeon with Sierra Neurosurgery.
Dr. Demers has worked in trauma centers before back east and says this was not his first experience with a mass casualty shooting.
He says gun shot wounds though especially when they affect the brain, present a different set of circumstances for him in the operating room,
“The speed at which a bullet enters the brain create not only a cavity where the actual bullet went, it also creates a shock wave and that shock wave is thought to cause some damage possibly even more damage than the bullet itself. If you have ever seen a bullet hole in a window, entry point in the window may be in-ordinarily small, but the back side may be blown out,” says Dr. Demers.
In surgery Dr. Demers says they had to open the woman's skull to relieve pressure from the brain expanding. The clot was taken care of, and she was sent to ICU.
Dr. Demers says the next 72 hours were critical and in this case he says point he couldn't ask for more.
“It went well, and she's in stable condition. And I'm surprised. I'm very surprised that she is doing so well. ((you feel pretty good?) Yes,” he says.
Sitting up, getting out of bed and walking are the next milestones for this patient.
He wanted to emphasize there is no comparison to Congresswoman Gabby Giffords as her injuries and his patient’s injuries are not the same.