View Full Version : Shot in the thigh but misses femoral . . .

06-21-2009, 12:21 AM
My MC is shot in the thigh, but the bullet misses the femoral artery. How much would this effect her ability to walk and stand, and how rapid would the blood loss be?

Thank you in advance :)

ETA: she has been shot in the past, so would that change things?

06-21-2009, 07:40 AM
She wouldn't threaten Usain Bolt any time soon, I'll tell you that. The impact on walking/standing would depend on whether the bullet strikes bone, tendon, cartilage, etc. A bullet can shatter if it strikes bone, thereby affecting any number of things. Blood loss would likely be considerable but missing the artery would mean its not fatal if she gets treatment in a reasonable amount of time.

In which body part was she shot previously. Impact would be minimal unless she was hit in the same spot. On the other hand, she has really bad luck.

06-21-2009, 05:52 PM
Shot with what? Bone broken?

Twelve-gauge, relatively close, buckshot. Probably has big chunk of thigh missing. Mobility impaired. Bone struck, mobility greatly impaired.

Commonly used handgun rounds, probably hole in, hole out. Some blood loss, but it can often be surprisingly little. Mobility not much impaired unless bone is broken.

06-21-2009, 06:00 PM
Aztec, she was shot in her lower side also.

Summonere, handgun rounds, and it does hit the bone.

Thank you for your responses! :)

06-21-2009, 08:47 PM
Lower side of the thigh? Medial or lateral? Depending on what muscle/tendon gets nailed will affect how badly she limps (and you say bone, so that's gonna be some nasty pain.) The bullet, if lodged, is going to yell at her NOT to move (via PAIN). Same for the loose/shattered bone. Pain exists so we don't make things worse.

Any further details I will leave to those who have a better idea of what being shot entails.

06-21-2009, 09:05 PM
I think you're looking at it backwards. As folks have said, the possibilities are many, depending upon the path of the bullet. So just do what your plot needs. If you want extreme pain and inability to walk, that fits; if you want the character to limp along, complaining but still able to do pretty well, that fits, too.

06-21-2009, 09:14 PM
Handgun wound, bone struck: Character might well limp around, mobility impaired. Bone broken in two: Character likely won't even try to use the wounded leg. Mobility greatly impaired.

Now, if your character is one tough SOB, you can have said character do whatever you want – or at least what works for the story – but a person's response to a gunshot wound is often determined by their psychological predisposition. In this case, your character's response to getting shot in the thigh may depend on that character's response to the earlier (and presumably healed?) gunshot.

Interestingly, many who survive gunshots report no initial pain as shock sets in. During those early moments of “fight or flight” response, when the body is dumping loads of adrenaline and other chemicals I leave to the medical experts to explain, the gunshot victims may well perform all sorts of activities of various strenuousness. Locally, for instance, a road-rage guy got shot in the thigh and walked without impairment to a fire station where he sought medical attention.

Once the stress-reaction chemicals wear off, though, I imagine pain. Lots of it.

What have you got in mind for this character to do, after being shot?

(I can imagine a few things, like dialling 911, but I'd be skeptical of the gunshot one running a marathon...)

06-22-2009, 04:13 AM
Well, she's in no position to be dialling 911, lol, since she's a wanted criminal.
And she is very tough. She's gotten shot multiple times in the past.
Currently in the novel, she's in quite a bit of pain and it's bleeding fairly rapidly, but she can still sort of walk/limp/lurch.

Thank you for your responses! :)

James D. Macdonald
06-23-2009, 07:41 AM
Femur broken?

A seriously life-threatening injury. And I don't care how tough an SOB you are, you're going to just lie there.