We have studied the surface and bulk plasmon losses associated with Li 1s photoemission. Here, full multiple scatterings of photoelectrons are taken into account before and after the plasmon losses within the quantum Landau formula that can describe overall features of the photoemission bands. We compared the depth profiles of the Li 1s single-loss spectra with full multiple scatterings and without elastic scatterings. They are strongly influenced by the elastic scatterings. The model accounting for the full multiple scatterings gives a rapidly decaying function of the depth because of the defocusing effects. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.