View Full Version : Bullet in leg question

08-12-2010, 02:30 PM
Hi, I have a character who gets shot twice in the same leg. He's 20, extreamly fit and healthy, and has dealt with pain and shock before. He gets the bullet removed, and gets patched up, stitches, the whole thing, about twenty minutes later. My question is, what is the probability of him being able to stand, and what sort of gun/bullet/type of wound does it have to be to have the least damage done to his leg? What does it have to miss? When he does stand, he's trying to save his sister, so he's got adrenaline and definitely determination working in his favour, but is the wound too bad for him to walk despite that? Should I be writing about a smaller wound?


08-12-2010, 03:09 PM
If he's shot through the meaty part of his leg with a small caliber round, .22 or .32, and the bullet doesn't hit any major blood vessels, and it doesn't damage major tendons that would prevent him from walking, and the wounds were properly dressed, he could get up and walk or even run.

I had an uncle who fought in the Battle of the Bulge in WWII. He was shot through the calf. He was being carried to an aid station on a stretcher, when the litter carrier was shot. My uncle got off the stretcher, placed the wounded medic on it, and helped carry him to the aid station. He almost made it, but was shot through his upper arm. He could no longer hold the stretcher with that arm, so he and the other medic dragged the stretcher with the wounded medic the rest of the way to the aid station. He got a Purple Heart and Bronze Star for what he did that day.

08-12-2010, 03:57 PM
Stay away from high caliber ammunition and high velocity guns. They'd both raise logical problems.

This is fairly common (http://www.google.com/products/catalog?hl=en&safe=off&client=serp&q=.38+Special&um=1&ie=UTF-8&cid=16394065009204822465&ei=0N9jTOuqBIL2swPE5NTgBw&sa=X&oi=product_catalog_result&ct=result&resnum=5&ved=0CEQQ8wIwBA#), but if I had to go with a popgun, you can bet it'd be this (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walther_P22).

08-12-2010, 07:19 PM
A keltec p32, or sig sauer p232 would fit the bill too, both fairly popular.

As far as walking after getting shot, shouldn't be a problem. Many people have reported that the pain doesn't strike right away, often they are not even aware they've been shot for a minute or two.

08-12-2010, 11:43 PM
I think the preceding posts are all pretty much correct. My experience is limited, however, to only four bullet paths and only in one leg and foot.

All passed through (the phrase before the silly through-and-through became so trendy). A .30 Carbine bullet was recovered from my boot. It broke bones, but with the boot still laced tightly, I was able to limp the hell out of there at a pretty good pace. The bullet through my lower leg glanced off bone and took out enough meat so that I have a cute dimple in my right shin. The ones through my calf and thigh just drilled round holes.

Since no major bones were broken and no major blood vessels were involved, I was able to travel at least two miles (seemed like 200). As said, there was no immediate pain -- only tingling sensations in my leg like when I hit my "funny bone" wrong.

Even after thirty or forty minutes, I only grimaced slightly and took it like a man. Those in the helicopter who laughed and said I wailed like a lost little girl are damned liars.

08-13-2010, 02:34 AM
@Chase: laughing a lot to the "lost little girl" quote. Thank you for the expertise - there isn't that much in the way of guns in Aus, so I had no idea.
@RJK, you uncle sounds amazing.
Everyone else - thank you for gun names and the such. I really was just guessing based on what I had read before in other fiction books.

Tsu Dho Nimh
08-13-2010, 08:24 AM
What does the plot need?

Give us that and we'll be able to tell you where the bullets need to go.

Drachen Jager
08-13-2010, 08:51 AM
He got a Purple Heart and Bronze Star for what he did that day.

Technically the purple heart was a medal he got for something the other team did. Or what HE didn't do (namely duck).

Which is what makes it a pretty stupid medal. You got shot! Horray for you! I wish I had a dozen men like 'ol Johnnie two-toes under my command!

08-13-2010, 12:51 PM
More specific? Well I would like him to be able to climb out a window and across to a ladder. but if someone can walk for two miles, then it should be fine. His arms are still good, as is his other leg, so the only thing I can see working against him is the pain from having to move his leg at all. And dragging it while you climb up a ladder should hurt less than walking on it, anyway.
Anyone thinks this is impossible, let me know. I can just have him walk down a corridor, it is just means I have to figure out something to distract his guards. Either/or.

Oh, and I didn't know anything about the purple heart, but I still think anyone who carries a stretcher back to a medic station or give up his place of said stretcher deserves credit. Especially as in my mind it hurts less to walk with a bullet in the arm than it does to walk with one in the leg...

And what does 'ol Johnnie two-toes mean? I've never heard the expression - we don't use it here.

Thanks again for all the comments

08-13-2010, 05:50 PM
You can't duck a bullet, they move too fast.

08-13-2010, 05:59 PM
I got shot in the leg when I was 14, fortunely it hit mostly blood vessels when it got in and got out, but I couldn't walk for a month since whenever I pressed that foot to the ground I started to bleed.