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Shark Bite Injuries

Understanding All That Blood and Stuff


Updated January 23, 2014

Shark in an aquarium

Sharks are much safer behind glass.

© Jeffrey

Sharks get a bad rap. Even though only about 80 or so unprovoked shark attacks happen worldwide, we tend to hear about them because they are so spectacular.

Besides, JAWS is a really good movie.

Shark bites look destructive and seem to be nothing more than a mass of torn meat. What you may not realize from looking at a shark bite, each one of those injuries has a label and a specific treatment. These are the injuries you will find with a shark bite.

  • Punctures

    Sharks have all those teeth! Each one leaves its mark.
  • Lacerations

    Shark teeth can tear into skin pretty easily and when the shark pulls, he rips it open. Shark bites cause deep lacerations and may cause a significant amount of bleeding.
  • Avulsions

    Avulsions are some of the ugliest injuries. These happen when Bruce (that's the shark) rips a chunk out.
  • Broken Bones

    Those jaws have some serious pressure. Sharks can easily break our measly little bones.
  • Amputations

    The ultimate culmination of all of the above, lacerations, punctures, and broken bones. It's always handy to find the amputated part, but in reality it probably went with the shark.

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