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View Full Version : Stab, Stab, Stab and a little distance please



Pepzie
10-17-2008, 01:15 AM
Hello
I'm all new to this forum, but so far I have found it pretty helpful. But I can't quiet find the info I'm looking for. So now I'm hoping someone could tell me or help me find what I'm looking for!?

And with that I'm just going to jump right to the story.

Think the middle ages. My heroin have just been (what would be fatally) stabbed in her upper abdomen, and is pretty much lying there just dying. Then she's magically transported to another dimension of sort (It's a fantasy world) in this other dimension medical science is about as developed as in our time (and also there is no magic). Anyway a boy finds her and she's taken to the "ER".

That was some basic info, very "un-detailed" but pretty much what you need to know. Now for my questions.

When she's stabbed it's with a broadsword and even though she isn't bleeding out all that much she is having internal bleeding (she technically dies and that's what sets off the whole "magically transported thing")That's what I have written anyways so now I wonder is this possible?

(If it's not, then well it's a "magic" world so I could make something up...) Ohh and she pulled the sword out herself because she figured she was gonna die and didn't wanna die with a big nasty sword sticking out of her. And also the sword went all the way through her stomach and out, that's important to know right? :S

Okay next question. After being operated on, patched up and filled up with drugs :P. How long would it take before A) she could sit, walk slowly etc. (I'm thinking about 2-6 days)??? B) leave the hospital? (I'm thinking about 6-9 days)??? C) be able to act normal, but not really do any heavy exercise and such??? and finally D) Be able to run through a forest chased by "coops"??? :P

Also, about, how many stitches would you get from a broadsword and how long would they stay in before being removed. Would she need to keep taking drugs for any longer time period. I guess she would be on antibiotics to keep any infection at bay (Infections are common in stomach wounds right?)

I know some of this stuffy might be out there for me to find, but I have googled and googled and I just can't find the answers to my questions. There use to be this really good website about different wounds (gun shots, stab wounds, burns etc) where you could get a lot of info but I can't find it now. Anyone know what website I'm talking about?

Thanks for answering
Jenn

PS.
Also if someone knew about how long it would take to get from Jerusalem to North France on foot, horse back and/or boat (or any other Medieval ways of transportation you can think of) This is for another story, though :P it would just be interesting to know because at the moment I just figured it would take a month or two but I might be all wrong?

Fenika
10-17-2008, 01:47 AM
There are several threads here about stabbings, I suggest you search for some of them along with reading the responses you get here. 'Stab' 'Knife' and even 'Sword' will help you find some. Sadly 'gut' is too short a word to search for, but 'guts' 'abdomen' and 'stomach' work. We really need to compile these threads somewhere...

Also, we have some folks who will give you some numbers on her recovery time, but keep in mind these are averages. A determined lass can put on a stoic face and start moving around faster, without being a hollywood-induced farce or driving herself right back into the grave. Just makes sure she takes those antibiotics ;)

Cheers,
Christina

2Wheels
10-17-2008, 02:13 AM
I'd say it's nearly impossible to answer. There are a gazillion variables at play: Width of sword, depth of thrust, cleanliness of sword, location and angle of wound, organs affected/pierced/contused, intestines pierced (or not), major arteries, lesser arteries. overall health of the victim, volume of bloodloss, muscles cut, blah blah blah. Then add all the variables of treatment options.....

The PS question: depends on the mode of transport. If sailing in good weather across the med, through the straits of Gibraltar etc, then a week plus. If going on foot all the way, give them six months. Carts get stuck in ruts (road maintenance was a bit iffy after the romans left, afterall) if the weather is wet which will delay things, and there's a lot of hills in the way. A well equipped hiker can do 25 to 30 km in a good day through foothills like the Corbiere's in southern France, some can do more along routes like the Camino in Galicia. Speed will also depend on health/stamina of traveller (do they eat well on route, sleep well - or rough it, with worn out sandals or bare feet.... again a million variables. I have a traveller in dark ages Fantasy going from southern mid-France equivalent to south Spain equivalent in a two month period (via cart and horseback) in a dryish summer. You pay your money.... :)

Rabe
10-17-2008, 07:12 AM
Hello
I'm all new to this forum, but so far I have found it pretty helpful. But I can't quiet find the info I'm looking for. So now I'm hoping someone could tell me or help me find what I'm looking for!?

There is actually a thread in here that discuss 'sword in the gut'. You might want to take a look at that thread for some of your questions. But, I have a few questions to pose regarding what you posted below. Now, keep in mind, these are only designed to make you think about what you've put here and what I, as a reader, would go "GAH?" right before I threw the story into the shredder.


Anyway a boy finds her and she's taken to the "ER".

I like this premise. I wonder if there would be fallout from the differences in the 'health' standards of her time and the other dimension. Such as weight, parasites, diseases, sanitary conditions and all that. Also, what do the law enforcers in this new dimension think of her?


When she's stabbed it's with a broadsword and even though she isn't bleeding out all that much she is having internal bleeding (she technically dies and that's what sets off the whole "magically transported thing")That's what I have written anyways so now I wonder is this possible?

Okay, here is the beginning of where I go "GAH!?"

Why is she bleeding mostly "internally" when she has a through and through wound in her abdomen? Blood is a liquid and liquid is going to take the course of least resistance. If the sword were left in the abdomen, I would roll my eyes at this and let it go, but the sword is pulled out so now I'm thinking "massive, messy blood loss".

Also, I'm not an expert (again look for that thread, I think it actually gives you a good guideline on the timetable for this type of wound) but your timetable below gives me a lot of pause. Which means the story again becomes rich mulch for my roses.

Rabe...

Rabe
10-17-2008, 07:18 AM
Here is a link to that other thread:

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=118091

Hope that helps you out a little bit.

Rabe...

Fenika
10-17-2008, 07:26 AM
It is possible to have *mostly* internal bleeding with through and throughs. As long as there is a place for the blood to pool, it will pool. The course of least resistance is usually down, not out. The abdomen is not typically a high pressure chamber. Put two holes in it and you're likely to have less pressure, not more. (Inflammation or lots of pooling can change that)

Pepzie
10-17-2008, 11:20 AM
WOW I got a whole lot of answers here (just over night)and I from what I'm hearing it all depends. I read through thread that was suggested (actually before I posted this :P) but what I sort of wanted to know was not there. But maybe I wasn't using the right key words while searching for other posts/ threads (I'm gonna go and try look some more now ;P)

Just as Bahamutchild wrote, I'm thinking now that external bleeding makes more sense, but since she is lying down there won't be so much blood on her it will all be on the ground beneath her (the reason I wanted her to bleed internally, was so her white dress wouldn't get soaked with blood. People tend to think that's scary and well...not help :P at least little kids do...I think)

Also this is "just" the sub plot, and I just wanted to make sure I wasn't writing anything totally impossible...

And Rabe about the new worlds view on her...well first they think she's just from another part of the world but in the end they figure out what's up and are not happy (she ends up getting chased by "coops" in the woods, that's why I sort of wanted the answer to how long it would take before she could do that) and at first they "quarantine" her(sort of) so she won't infect them with anything (from another part of their own world).

I think the actually most important question would be how long before she could go back to "her" time/dimension? I mean there gotta be possible complications if you go from modern to middle ages after having surgery done (stitches, antibiotics etc) What is important to think about? Any tips that would make the medicine seem more realistic would be great. :)

An other question I came up with...what possible complications would there be when she got back to her world if "I" for example: gave her a smallpox vaccine? could that potentially start an epidemic of smallpox in her world?

If my questions seems totally lame, it's because my medical knowledge is very limited...it really isn't my area :(

ohh and thanks for the info on traveling...Now I'm thinking that they are gonna find a boat and sail to south of France then take horse. And money is no really problem, but being sneaky sort of is...

Kathie Freeman
10-17-2008, 07:41 PM
A smallpox vaccination (or any other for that matter) uses killed virus, so it wouldn't start an epidemic, but exposure to someone with an active disease, even a cold or the flu might.

Keyan
10-17-2008, 10:32 PM
Perhaps polio?
Though I don't know why they'd be giving her a polio vaccine.

Do you *want* her starting an epidemic? I'm sure we can think of something.

FennelGiraffe
10-18-2008, 12:00 AM
When she's stabbed it's with a broadsword

Aside from the medical issues, have you checked out the characteristics of broadswords? I'm not knowledgeable about specific details, but swords come in two main types: those used for cutting and those used for thrusting. For cutting swords, the edge is the important part, and some don't even have sharp points. It would be difficult to stab someone with one of those. In order for your character to get stabbed, you need a thrusting sword. Of course, many can be used both ways, but even so are usually more effective one way than the other.

Rabe
10-19-2008, 02:11 AM
And Rabe about the new worlds view on her...well first they think she's just from another part of the world but in the end they figure out what's up and are not happy (she ends up getting chased by "coops" in the woods, that's why I sort of wanted the answer to how long it would take before she could do that) and at first they "quarantine" her(sort of) so she won't infect them with anything (from another part of their own world)

Sounds interesting (the answers you provided). Of course I would rather get all the answers from reading the story after it's written (<--- total lie, but should always be the answer! ;))

I think in the case of why she's out and about in the woods, the timeline of the healing would matter less as long as the author keeps in mind that there could be complications for these actions. Which, again, could make the chase through the wounds that much richer. That she's forced to go on despite her physical abilities in order to escape from the 'coops'.

I'm not sure what key words we missed out on, but it seems a lot of the answers for your questions are actually "depends on what the story requires" rather than anything else.

Rabe...

WriteKnight
10-19-2008, 06:51 PM
Just a note to those who think that one cannot stab with a 'blunt' point.

Not so.

Yes, there are swords with more 'pointed' or acute angled points, and some with more 'rounded' points - the difference in design is focused on penetrating ARMOR, not skin or light clothing.

Yes, I have SEEN a blunt sword penetrate an arm and shoulder.