VBIED: Le point UK
In-vehicle extremity injuries from improvised explosive devices: current and future foci
The conﬂicts in Iraq and Afghanistan have been epitomized by the insurgents’ use of the improvised explosive device against vehicle-borne security forces. These weapons, capable of causing multiple severely injured casualties in a single incident, pose the most prevalent single threat to Coalition troops operating in the region. Improvements in personal protection and medical care have resulted in increasing numbers of casualties surviving with complex lower limb injuries, often leading to long-term disability. Thus, there exists an urgent requirement to investigate and mitigate against the mechanism of extremity injury caused by these devices. This will necessitate an ontological approach, linking molecular, cellular and tissue interaction to physiological dysfunction. This can only be achieved via a collaborative approach between clinicians, natural scientists and engineers, combining physical and numerical modelling tools with clinical data from the battleﬁeld. In this article, we compile existing knowledge on the effects of explosions on skeletal injury, review and critique relevant experimental and computational research related to lower limb injury and damage and propose research foci required to drive the development of future mitigation technologies.