New category of lightning strike-induced injury

The twin boys were camping in a tent in The Netherlands when lightning struck an electrical current transformer located 15m away.

Emergency doctors, writing in the Annals of Emergency Medicine, reported that the boys presented to the trauma centre with normal blood pressure, pulse and free airways, one with a second-degree face burn and the other with a skull laceration.

However, on closer examination, one boy had two copper wires protruding from his scapula, which were removed surgically under local anaesthetic and he was discharged the next day.

His twin brother had a small puncture wound on the right pectoral muscle and a 2cm-long fragment of copper wire was discovered in his lung parenchyma, with computed tomography showing pneumo- and haematothorax.

The copper wire was retrieved during exploratory right-sided anterolateral thoracotomy and the boy went home a week later.

The authors said a penetrating thoracic blast injury