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Open Access Publications from the University of California

High-Pressure Injection Injury of the Face: A Case Report on Presentation and Management


Introduction: High-pressure injection injuries have been chronicled for decades.1 These injuries often affect distal extremities as they are most commonly involved in workplace accidents.1 However, we discuss a young male with a paint-gun injection injury to his face.

Case Report: We discuss the case of a young man presenting to the emergency department after high-pressure injection injury to the face. He eventually underwent extensive debridement of the face. We discuss differences in caring for an injection wound to an extremity versus the face, including time sensitivity of treatment, initial stabilizing measures, and critical steps.

Discussion: This case demonstrates a rare presentation of a high-pressure paint injection injury. This injury presented a unique surgical challenge where, despite compartment syndrome being less common, cosmetic outcome and infectious complication prevention remained critical priorities.

Conclusion: While similarities exist in management of an injection injury to a limb, due to the rarity and deceptive appearance of this particular injury to the face, high suspicion along with urgent imaging and surgical consultation is warranted.

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