Aussie Nurse Stabbed In Heart During London Terror Attack

Australian nurse Kirsty Boden died rapidly and without much suffering after being stabbed through the heart and lung in the London Bridge attack two years ago.

The 28-year-old and fellow Australian Sara Zelenak, 21, along with six others were killed when three men ploughed a van into pedestrians on the bridge before attacking dozens of people with kitchen knives on the night of June 3, 2017.

Boden, who was eating at the nearby Boro Bistro, went to help and was bending over to check on French waiter Alexandre Pigeard, who had been stabbed, when she was knifed herself.

Pathologist Simon Poole told an inquest into the attacks in London that the Australian was stabbed three times in the left side of her body -- in her chest, arm and head.

He says the knife blows had struck her body with "severe force", with one blade passing completely through her arm and out the other side and the tip of a blade found lodged in her temple bone.

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Kirsty Boden was killed as she tried to help victims during the London Bridge terror attack IMAGE: Metropolitan Police via AAP.

But neither of those wounds were fatal, Poole said, adding the South Australian's death was caused by the injuries to her left chest after the knife passed through her ribs and into her heart.

The pathologist said Boden's lung collapsed and blood loss caused her to go into shock, before she died.

Poole explained that no treatment could have saved the Australian and he agreed she had died rapidly and without much suffering.

"I consider it highly likely," he told the inquest on Thursday.

The pathologist also said there was evidence the nurse had tried to defend herself, given the stab wound in her arm and other small injuries.

"Yes, some of the injuries on the back of left hand ... could be regarded as defensive," he said.

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Poole also noted Boden had greenstick fractures to several of her ribs, likely caused by CPR.

In earlier evidence, Boden's friends Melanie Schroeder and Harriet Moonie, along with off-duty doctor Saima Khan, described how they had desperately tried to resuscitate the Australian.

Canadian Christine Archibald, 30, Frenchmen Xavier Thomas, 45, Sebastian Belanger, 36, and Pigeard, 26, Briton James McMulln, 32, and 39-year-old Spaniard Ignacio Echeverria were also killed in the attack.

Archibold and Thomas were hit by the van while the others were stabbed.

Another 48 people were seriously wounded, while all three attackers were shot dead by police at the scene.