International Journal of Legal Medicine

, Volume 123, Issue 5, pp 419–425 | Cite as

Experimental simulation of reentry shots using a skin-gelatine composite model

  • M. Große PerdekampEmail author
  • S. Pollak
  • A. Thierauf
  • E. Straßburger
  • M. Hunzinger
  • B. Vennemann
Original Article


A bullet that has passed in and out of one body segment may continue its way into another part of the body causing a second entrance (“reentry”) wound, which is often said to have an atypical and sometimes confusing appearance. To analyze this problem in a systematical approach, 9-mm Parabellum full metal-jacketed projectiles were fired at skin-gelatine composite models simulating the consecutive passage of a bullet through two parts of a body. When there was a distance between the two segments, the primary exit and the reentry skin wounds did not show any distinctive features differing from usual gunshot injuries. In the case of contact between exit and reentry site, the corresponding skin wounds resembled each other as both had central tissue defects surrounded by abrasion areas. The subsequent investigation of the simulant revealed that skin particles from both the exit and the adjacent reentry site had been displaced in the direction of the shot along the whole bullet track of the second segment. The morphological findings are presented and discussed with respect to the pertinent literature, and possible physical ballistic explanations are suggested.


Gunshot injury Reentry wound Exit wound Composite model 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Große Perdekamp
    • 1
    Email author
  • S. Pollak
    • 1
  • A. Thierauf
    • 1
  • E. Straßburger
    • 2
  • M. Hunzinger
    • 2
  • B. Vennemann
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Legal MedicineUniversity Hospital FreiburgFreiburgGermany
  2. 2.Fraunhofer Institute for High-Speed DynamicsErnst-Mach-Institut (EMI)KandernGermany

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