Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Ocular injuries from gel blasters: not just a harmless toy


Gel blasters fire a hydrated gel polymer and are developed to circumvent the restrictions placed on paintball and airsoft guns. Because there are no reported cases of injury caused by gel blasters in the literature, some Australian jurisdictions have categorised them as a toy. Presented here are two cases of potentially blinding blunt ocular trauma which question the misguided notion they are a harmless toy. Two children each with a macrohyphaema were managed at a tertiary ophthalmology centre within 2 weeks of each other after being struck by a gel blaster projectile. Their vision ultimately returned to normal, but both face lifelong risks of ocular complications. These cases highlight the need for vigilance, and the appropriate restriction of powerful weapons, with the inherent need for eye protection when operating any such projectiles reiterated. It is recommended their licensing is made congruous with paintball guns to prevent false reassurance of their safety.

  • accidents, injuries
  • anterior chamber
  • ophthalmology
  • public health
  • paediatrics
View Full Text

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.