There is currently concern in the UK that injuries and deaths caused by firearms are increasing. This is supported by small local studies but not by wider research to inform targeted prevention programmes. Methods A retrospective analysis was performed of firearm injuries from the Trauma Audit and Research Network (TARN) database (1998e, 2007), the largest national registry of serious injuries. Data were analysed to determine temporal trends in the prevalence of firearm injuries and demographic characteristics of firearm victims. Conclusions Deaths and serious injuries caused by firearms remain rare in the civilian population of England and Wales, although an upward trend can be described. Victims of assault and homicide are predominantly young men living in urban areas and the population involved is getting younger. However, of all deaths, self-inflicted wounds are nearly twice as common as assaults, affecting predominantly older men living in more rural areas.
- Death and injury