Teen recovering after spear removed from his brain

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Video report by Liz Nagy, WSVN

Posted on June 19, 2012 at 2:52 PM

MIAMI (AP) — Doctors in Miami have successfully removed a spear accidentally shot through a teenager's skull during a spearfishing trip.

Yasser Lopez, 16, was in serious condition Tuesday at Jackson Memorial Hospital's Ryder Trauma Center.

The spear gun accidentally fired as it was being loaded. Lopez was hospitalized June 7 with 3 feet of the spear protruding from his forehead.

Doctors say the spear entered the teen's head 2 inches above his right eye and came out the back of his skull. Miami-Dade Fire Rescue tools were used to cut the spear so the teen could be X-rayed.

The rest of the spear was removed in a three-hour surgery.

Dr. Ross Bullock is a neurosurgeon who worked on the case. His trauma team determined the tip of the spear inside Lopez's head was actually a screw tip.

"It was possible for us to figure out a strategy during the operation to be able to unscrew the tip of the spear, instead of having to get this whole spear dragged out through his brain," said Dr. Bullock.

Doctors told reporters Monday that the spear missed all the main blood vessels in the brain. They said Lopez doesn't remember the accident.

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