Camel-related major vascular injuries: A 20-years’ experience

Fikri M. Abu-Zidan, Saleh Abdel-Kader, Hussam Mousa, Ahmad Al Aiyan, Mohamed S. Baguneid, Ali Jawas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Majority of human animal-related injuries in the United Arab Emirates are caused by camels. These may involve major vessels and can be life-threatening. We aimed to study the biomechanism, injured regions, management, and outcome of major camel-related human vascular injuries. Methods: We retrospectively studied all patients who were admitted to Al-Ain Hospital with camel-related major vascular injury during January 2001 to January 2020. Studied variables included demography, mechanism of injury, injured structures, clinical presentation, vital signs on arrival, associated injuries, surgical management, ICU stay, length of hospital stay, complications, and outcome. Results: Seven patients were studied; all were males having a median age of 26 years. Five out of six bite injuries (83%) occured during the camel rutting season. The injuries were severe and life-threatening. A camel bite causes four small elliptical wounds of the canine teeth which resembles two stab wounds of 8 cm long, penetrating deeply and injuring major vessels. Four involved the carotid artery, one the femoral artery and vein, one the external iliac vein and one the aorta which was due to a fall from a camel. Although the standard of surgical care was high, the outcome was poor. Six patients were admitted to the ICU for a median of 5 days. One patient died, one became vegetative, and one had arm paralysis. Conclusions: Major camel-related vascular injuries have a poor clinical outcome. This is related to the biomechanism of injury which combines penetrating, crushing and blunt trauma. Neck wounds of camel bites can be closed primarily after debridement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)138-144
Number of pages7
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2023


  • Artery
  • Bite
  • Camel
  • Injury
  • Major
  • Trauma
  • Vein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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