100 Boston Patients Are Out of Hospital

Decade of war meant doctors 'were without question ready'

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 17, 2013 9:17 AM CDT

(Newser) – As of this morning, 100 of the 183 people hospitalized in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing have been released, CNN reports, in a testament to how well area doctors have handled the crisis. Boston boasts nearly 80 hospitals, and they're regarded as some of the world's best, the Week points out, while MSNBC observes that trauma treatment has improved drastically since 9/11—in part because of America's war experience. The Marathon bombs were IEDs, "and that's exactly what a number of our troops in Iraq in Afghanistan have had to deal with," one emergency room specialist tells NPR.

Techniques learned in those conflicts have now proliferated into civilian medicine. Tourniquets, for instance, have gone from being considered a dangerous last resort to a routine life-saver. Shrapnel extraction techniques have improved as well. It also helped that there was a medical tent at the finish line already, which quickly became a well-oiled triage center. "I've seen a lot worse," one emergency room physician tells the New York Times. "They were without question ready—not for those types of injuries, but they were prepared."

S.W.A.T. team members stand guard on the campus of Massachusetts General Hospital  following an explosion at the finish line of the Boston Marathon, April 15, 2013.
S.W.A.T. team members stand guard on the campus of Massachusetts General Hospital following an explosion at the finish line of the Boston Marathon, April 15, 2013.   (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)
Dr. Brien Barnewolt, chair of emergency medicine at Tufts Medical Center in Boston, speaks to reporters at the hospital, April 16, 2013.
Dr. Brien Barnewolt, chair of emergency medicine at Tufts Medical Center in Boston, speaks to reporters at the hospital, April 16, 2013.   (AP Photo/Josh Reynolds)
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