Treatment on the battlefield has advanced significantly with this war, largely due to the new bandage technology that can seal severely bleeding wounds in as fast as one minute. As a result, there are *far* fewer coalition fatalities than in previous wars, where traumatic blood loss has been the leading cause of death. However, the flipside of this improvement is that more people will be maimed for life.
Some of the most severely wounded in Iraq are being relocated to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany, which has treated close to 600 soldiers involved in the current war -- over half of those before the war.
"It really is disgustingly sanitized on television," says Boulder neurosurgeon Gene Bolles, "We have had a number of really horrific injuries now from the war. They have lost arms, legs, hands, they have been burned, they have had significant brain injuries and peripheral nerve damage. These are young kids that are going to be, in some regards, changed for life. I don't feel that people realize that."
Although only a handful of fatalities were reported yesterday from the attack into Baghdad, one US officer reported 17 US vehicles were destroyed in the attack. If that is so, then we can expect Dr. Bolles and the others over at Landstuhl to be busy for quite awhile...