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Trauma surgeons dealing with increase in shootings brace for busiest season

As Columbus deals with more victims of gun violence, doctors at OhioHealth’s Grant Medical Center use experience and extra tools to treat them. (WSYX/WTTE)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) -- As Columbus deals with more victims of gun violence, doctors at OhioHealth’s Grant Medical Center use experience and extra tools to treat them.

"We feel like we are getting those penetrating injuries earlier than we did previous years,” said Dr. Michelle Kincaid.

Kincaid has been a trauma surgeon at Grant for three years. She said when victims arrive, blood transfusions, breathing tubes and tourniquets are some ways patients are treated and stabilized before heading into surgery. The trauma surgeon explained common injuries are to the abdomen, pelvis, and extremities. She said the bullets can cause severe injuries.

"That energy can destroy anything from skin, to muscle, to bone, to organs, to intestines."

An expansion of trauma bays and medical tools help surgeons keep up with devastating injuries, according to Dr. Kincaid.

The doctor said gunshot victims usually are younger.

The constant flow of victims can take its toll on hospital staff.

"It is hard to put in both the physical energy, but also the emotional energy to take care of them."

According to Kincaid, staff help each other cope with the injuries they treat daily.

"We're always prepared here at Grant for whatever walks through the door. So, we're getting ready for the summer."

The trauma surgeon says summer is the trauma centers busiest time of year.

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