25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#41  Postby Weaver » May 31, 2013 10:46 pm

rwatter wrote:
Weaver wrote:Using a gun for a suicide attempt is not a signal that the person wants to die more, or is more committed to suicide. It is simply more lethal, on average, than most other methods. Survivors of all suicide attempts should be treated the same - as injured people in need of help.


I don't think most people have your medical knowledge. I'm sure most people think a shot to the head is a sure, and instant death. I was one of them until yesterday. :)
That will happen - nobody knows everything.

Requring an official DNR probably makes sense from a legal standpoint for the hospital, but anyone who was in a horrible accident, or a failed suicide attempt could end up being fine with living after surviving it.
Absolutely - and unless one absolutely knows that they won't be fine after, they must be given the chance.
No one "cries for help" by shooting themself in the head; they do it because they want to die. IMO that should be considered a DNR.

NO. Again, no. Because of the spontaneous, ill-conceived nature of most suicide attempts, they must not be considered equal to a DNR. These are not carefully reasoned decisions arrived at after careful, sober contemplation and hard reasoning. Most suicides are rather spontaneous, are based on a desire to end depression or other situations that are perceived to be untenable, and quite often involve alcohol and/or drugs which cloud judgement. Simply because someone made a suicide attempt, no matter what method was chosen, shouldn't be taken as a strong sign that they refuse life-saving treatment - because there is so much evidence to show otherwise.

Please, please, everyone - stop sitting in judgement about what a person with suicidal acts "must" be thinking. Stop being so callous as to think it's OK to let them die if they don't do an immediately lethal job themselves. And stop thinking that the selection of a gun vs other method denotes seriousness of intent. None of these are true.
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#42  Postby chairman bill » May 31, 2013 10:56 pm

UtilityMonster wrote:Shooting oneself in the head is clear consent that one wishes to die. Keeping then alive violates their wishes rather than grants them.


What utter bollocks. Have you ever wished you were dead, to the point of attempting to take your own life? If not, you really haven't got a fucking clue. Have you ever tried to kill yourself, been foiled in the attempt, and then following treatment, got on with living, without wanting to kill yourself anymore? if not, you really haven't got a fucking clue. And until you've got a fucking clue, maybe you should simply wind your neck in & not make idiotic statements about things you know fuck all about.
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#43  Postby orpheus » May 31, 2013 11:03 pm

I'm with Weaver and chairman bill entirely on this. Just for the record.
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#44  Postby rwatter » May 31, 2013 11:29 pm

Weaver wrote:
NO. Again, no. Because of the spontaneous, ill-conceived nature of most suicide attempts, they must not be considered equal to a DNR. These are not carefully reasoned decisions arrived at after careful, sober contemplation and hard reasoning. Most suicides are rather spontaneous, are based on a desire to end depression or other situations that are perceived to be untenable, and quite often involve alcohol and/or drugs which cloud judgement. Simply because someone made a suicide attempt, no matter what method was chosen, shouldn't be taken as a strong sign that they refuse life-saving treatment - because there is so much evidence to show otherwise.

Please, please, everyone - stop sitting in judgement about what a person with suicidal acts "must" be thinking. Stop being so callous as to think it's OK to let them die if they don't do an immediately lethal job themselves. And stop thinking that the selection of a gun vs other method denotes seriousness of intent. None of these are true.


Okay, but like your earlier post on DNRs said, a DNR should be honored if it was signed a long time ago when the suicidal person likely had more clear mind?

When your dealing with a brain injury from a gun shot, what kind of treatment is there? It doesn't seem like something that could be fixed with a zoloft once a day. It seems like they would all end up like James Vance and have even more physical and mental problems, with few options of treatment, so I don't understand how they would change their mind...

If someone cuts their wrists, that is probably an easy fix. I'm sure a ton of those people regret it, and go on living a happy life. TBI seems a lot different.
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#45  Postby Swan » Jul 04, 2013 6:05 pm

Weaver wrote:Guns are not the uber-reliable killers they are portrayed to be, - there is a LOT of variability in terminal ballistics. This is one of the things I'm very interested in, that I expect to keep learning more about as long as I live.


THANK YOU!

Guns have a "wooojeeeee" mystique about them... seriously the layman thinks all firearms are ultra-lethal *magic*! Yeesh.

If firearms were as deadly as most people tend to think... they'd kill the operator about as often as the people in *front* of them.

Every action has an opposite but equal reaction. The bullet leaves the chamber with the same force *forward* as the weapon's recoil *backward*. The difference in lethality comes from force concentrated in the bullet's shape and aerodynamicity, versus the recoil-absorbing properties of the weapon's handgrip and the larger contact area and velocity-absorbing position of the handgrip held tightly, distributing forces along the bones, tendons, muscles and ther structures of the forearm or shoulder.

"The purpose of a gun is to place a small metallic object where the person wants it placed. Anything which fails in that purpose, fails as a gun." -- Illya Kuryakin/David McDaniel "Monster Wheel Affair"

The danger (IMNSHO) is magnified by that effect. In other words, yes, firearms are deadly. HOWEVER the 'mystique' of them tends to rapidly destabilize any given situation where emotions are involved. When a firearm is produced, the target of that firearm will tend to behave in extremely unpredictable ways due to sudden induced fear.

Firearms tend to be MOST effective when shown (holstered) but NOT deployed. It is not the first blow which starts a fight. It is the second.

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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#46  Postby Swan » Jul 04, 2013 6:35 pm

As for suicide... again IMNSHO, the use of a firearm signals to me, possibly LESS reasoned attempt, not more. Been there, done that.

My first suicide attempt occurred when I was five or six years of age. Having NO idea of what I was doing, only that I wanted not to be alive any longer, I stuffed books under the door in my bedroom, and towels in the windows, thinking I would asphyxiate. Reason? Teasing/bullying in school. Result. I lived of course.

The unrelenting bullying never stopped. Not once. Not through THIRTEEN different schools in seven locations in California, Texas and Missouri. Sometimes I would change schools as frequently as three times in one school year. My education suffered badly.

However, I made several attempts, based on anger or emotion, and failed each time. Sleeping pills, wrists, etc.

My final attempt would have been asphyxiation using nitrous oxide from a tank with a mask. I never got that far because other things occurred which changed my decison.

HOWEVER... the difference between the sudden emotional impulse toward self-destruction, and a rational determination to leave this world, lies not entirely in the *method* as in the *preparation*. In fact, for the first attempts, I was acting on emotions but held a secret fear that I might succeed. Thus I left signals. Told people. Chose methods less lethal in the subconscious hope I'd be discovered and stopped. Which I was.

The final attempt was SERIOUS. Planned with aid of the Hemlock Society. I told NO-ONE. I disposed of my personal possessions. I made a will. I gave away everything I owned to friends, but with NO explanation as to why. I selected a method that would provide the discoverers of my body the least emotional trauma, but with the highest statistical chance of success (not chickening out at the last moment).

What happened to change my mind? LASFS. The Los Angeles Sicence Fantasy Society. LASFS and fandom. Finding out AT LAST that I was NOT a freak! At the age of 24 years old, I found out that OTHERS liked the same things I did, thought similar thoughts and processed 'reality' in the same way I did! At 61 years of age, I am glad I changed my mind. HOWEVER... absent the knowledge that I am NOT a freak... I would never have regretted my choice to act.

Now, I am VERY grateful I failed. If I found someone with a TBI due to self-inflicted GSW, I would ALWAYS err on the side of resuscitation. If I found someone who had prepared as thoroughly as I did... THEN it would be DNR time. When a person TRULY intends to destroy him or herself... he or she WILL succeed.

That said, I am FIRMLY in the pro-self deliverance camp. Incurable disease, painful conditions, intractable, untenable situations
PLUS the fact that *I OWN MY LIFE*... NOBODY else does! Suicide, rational self deliverance is... and ought to ALWAYS be, an option.

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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#47  Postby brandon » Dec 07, 2016 3:40 am

Where is your source? The success rate for suicide by gun shot to head is over 90%. Most of the people that fail, fail because they don't know what they are doing.
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#48  Postby zulumoose » Dec 08, 2016 1:36 pm

The final attempt was SERIOUS. Planned with aid of the Hemlock Society. I told NO-ONE. I disposed of my personal possessions. I made a will. I gave away everything I owned to friends, but with NO explanation as to why. I selected a method that would provide the discoverers of my body the least emotional trauma, but with the highest statistical chance of success (not chickening out at the last moment).


My experiences with suicidal thoughts are probably the exact opposite of this. When I was at the lowest points I was completely disconnected from society and the world, possessions and the comfort of others meant nothing whatsoever. I wandered aimlessly about without eating or drinking for days. The way I explain how it felt is that if I found out I had won millions in a lottery, I would not have reacted at all, if anything it would have driven me deeper into depression because the timing would have seemed like the universe was mocking me.
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#49  Postby crank » Dec 08, 2016 5:20 pm

chairman bill wrote:There's a belief that a bullet through the mouth = instant lights out, and it's sometimes said to be the sniper's ideal shot. Well if done properly, it will sever the spinal cord at the base of the skull, and the person drops immediately, but it's a shot a sniper is rarely going to take - a high velocity round amidships will usually be enough to ruin someone's day, and it's a more certain hit. But I did see the x-rays of a bloke who'd shot himself in the mouth, aiming up into the brain. The bullet lodged between the brain hemispheres, leaving him with a serious headache & a hole in the top of his mouth, and nothing much more than that. A twelve-bore double-barrelled shotgun would have made sure of the job, though it is rather messy. Tends to be the farmer's choice when it comes to ending it all - they've always got a shotgun hanging around.

BTW, is it just me that thinks euthanasia is fuckwitted & fascist?

From what I understand, it's the high velocity that can make a huge difference. There is a shock wave that results from these rounds as they traverse the body that can cause severe damage well away from the actual hole. Many handgun rounds don't have the necessary velocity to form shock waves.

No one mentioned Phineas Gage? A real staple of Ripley's Believe it or Not.
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#50  Postby Weaver » Dec 08, 2016 8:39 pm

brandon wrote:Where is your source? The success rate for suicide by gun shot to head is over 90%. Most of the people that fail, fail because they don't know what they are doing.

The source for the OP's claim is right there in plain sight in the OP. It is the HTML link at the bottom of the quote box containing the explanatory details.

rwatter wrote:I stumbled across this and don't understand it... I thought a gunshot to the head was game over. How do so many people survive it, and how do only 28 of 39 patients who died from it met the standard for brain death? If you're dead because of TBI, how does not that mean brain dead?

Sixty-six patients with gunshot wounds to the head, including 59 with intracranial involvement (43 male, average age 26 years) were seen during a 4-year period. Injuries were limited to the head in 50 of 59 patients. Overall mortality was 66 per cent. Predictors of mortality included Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) of six or less (93%), self-inflicted gunshot wounds (75%), and computed tomography (CT) findings of bihemispheric injury (87%) or ventricular injury (82%). Of the 39 patients who died, 28 met standard criteria for brain death...

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8239201


Science must be incredible because an "overall mortality of 66 per cent" for gun shots to the head make no sense to me.


It is a National Institute of Health study, published in PubMed.

What is your source for the 90% number?

Also, you do realize that, although the discussion later centered around suicides and suicide attempts, this study did not limit itself to such events, but to all head GSWs seen in a particular facility over a two year period?
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#51  Postby brandon » Feb 13, 2017 2:56 pm

This is my source for the 90% number.
http://lostallhope.com/suicide-methods/ ... al-methods

Think of all the celebrities that have commit suicide by firearm. Think of all the Nazis that commit suicide by firearm at the end of WW2. The success rate is higher than 75%.

Keep in mind that a gunshot wound to the head could be that a bullet winged you, or even a piece of bird shot winged you.
That study could just be a poor sample.
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#52  Postby Weaver » Feb 13, 2017 3:47 pm

There is a significant difference between a group mostly consisting of victims of gunshot assault and those self-inflicting gunshots to their own heads.

Argument from incredulity combined with a deliberate ignorance of the effects of range on accuracy don't mean you're right.
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#53  Postby brandon » Feb 13, 2017 5:05 pm

The study does not tell you how many of those 66 patients had self inflicted wounds. It could very well be the case that only 4 of them had self inflicted wounds and 3 of those 4 died.

Here is a credible source that refutes the claim that "25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head."
http://www.baltimoresun.com/health/bal- ... story.html
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#54  Postby Weaver » Feb 13, 2017 7:26 pm

Sigh.

The study in the OP found a 25% survival rate. Among the group of patients they looked at, 25% survived. The study cited in the Baltimore Sun wasn't looking at a group of patients - they were including a group of all head GSWs, which by definition includes many who are never classified as patients and thus do not enter the health care system.

The study in the OP noted that self-infliction was a predictor of mortality. It is highly likely that many self-inflicted GSWs were so immediately lethal that their victims never entered the health care system to be counted - giving a completely different statistical picture than that shown in the OP.

You cannot compare apples and oranges like that. It would be just as inappropriate as comparing the lethality of a self-inflicted GSW to one inflicted by a third party in the course of an assault, and complaining that someone observing a higher survival rate in the assault GSWs was wrong because the self-inflicted mortality rate was much higher.
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#55  Postby collecemall » Apr 26, 2017 5:28 am

I realize this thread is old and I didn't read much of it. However, I thought I'd say something about people self inflicting head shots and living. It's actually fairly common. I have a relative who is a surgeon who does facial reconstruction regularly. He encounters this more than you would guess. What happens is people take the barrel and put it in their mouth while leaning their head back to fit the barrel opening against the roof of their mouth right behind their front teeth. Because their heads are tilted back they just blow the front of their face off. Often losing eyes etc. So moral of the story is if you want to blow your brains out don't put the barrel in your mouth.
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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#56  Postby Thomas Eshuis » Apr 26, 2017 6:16 am

Weaver wrote:

Please, please, everyone - stop sitting in judgement about what a person with suicidal acts "must" be thinking. Stop being so callous as to think it's OK to let them die if they don't do an immediately lethal job themselves. And stop thinking that the selection of a gun vs other method denotes seriousness of intent. None of these are true.

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Re: 25% of people survive self-inflected gun shots to the head??

#57  Postby crank » Apr 27, 2017 2:24 pm

There are an awful lot of people who try to commit suicide who most definitely want to kill themselves and would be POed that someone interfered with their intent. Having said that, most of these people won't botch the job, it's the ones who are more likely making 'a cry for help' kind of attempt that will botch it. I fully hope to die by my own hand at some point, hopefully a long ways off, and I won't botch it. I would also kill anyone trying to stop me if I had to, because who the fuck made them god?
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