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Medicine, Science, and the Law

John D Gilbert, Roger W Byard
Sotos syndrome is a rare congenital syndrome caused by deletions or mutations in the NSD1 gene (chromosome 5q35) which results in overgrowth. A wide range of manifestations may result in unexpected and/or early death, including congenital cardiac malformations and tumours, epilepsy, intra-tumoural haemorrhage or embolism and bleeding diatheses. A case of lethal pulmonary fat embolism complicating revision of a left total hip replacement following spontaneous fracture is reported in a 39-year-old man with Sotos syndrome...
January 1, 2018: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Banwari Meel
Background Firearm-related deaths are a serious public-health problem in South Africa, which has the second-highest rate of firearm-related deaths in the world. Objective The aim of this study was to examine the trend in firearm deaths in the Transkei subregion of South Africa. Method An autopsy record review study was conducted at the Forensic Pathology Laboratory at Mthatha over a period of 23 years (1993-2015). Results Over a 23-year period (1993-2015), 27,036 autopsies were performed at the Mthatha Forensic Pathology Laboratory on people who had died from unnatural causes...
January 1, 2018: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Fumiko Satoh, Motoki Osawa
Double-suicide cases have long been common in Japan, particularly among lovers. Classical studies conducted in the 1950s are well known. According to a report by Ohara, the double-suicide rate in Japan was recorded as 3.1% in 1954. Nevertheless, recent tendencies have not been reported. To assess the latest trends of double suicide, extensive studies were conducted in a populous area of Kanagawa, Japan, during 1999-2011. Suicides during the period in the domestic area claimed 23,195 victims. In all, 82 cases of double suicide were extracted, with 170 victims, meaning that double suicides occurred with incidence of 0...
January 1, 2018: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Nan Zhou, Qiu-Ping Wu, Terry Su, Qian-Hao Zhao, Kun Yin, Da Zheng, Jing-Jing Zheng, Lei Huang, Jian-Ding Cheng
Producing qualified forensic pathological practitioners is a common difficulty around the world. In China, forensic pathology is one of the required major subspecialties for undergraduates majoring in forensic medicine, in contrast to forensic education in Western countries where forensic pathology is often optional. The enduring predicament is that the professional qualities and abilities of forensic students from different institutions vary due to the lack of an efficient forensic pedagogical model. The purpose of this article is to describe the new pedagogical model of forensic pathology at Zhongshan School of Medicine, Sun Yat-sen University, which is characterised by: (a) imparting a broad view of forensic pathology and basic knowledge of duties and tasks in future careers to students; (b) educating students in primary skills on legal and medical issues, as well as advanced forensic pathological techniques; (c) providing students with resources to broaden their professional minds, and opportunities to improve their professional qualities and abilities; and (d) mentoring students on occupational preparation and further forensic education...
January 1, 2018: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Andres Rodriguez Zorro, Jairo Hernando Vivas Diaz
Acute appendicitis is one of the most common surgical emergencies in paediatrics. However, acute appendicitis in early infancy is an uncommon condition. Furthermore, strangulation of the small intestine through appendicular knotting is described as very unusual in the literature and is generally not well-diagnosed in the clinical context. This article reports the case of a 23-month-old girl who entered the emergency department with a three-day history of abdominal symptoms and who died in less than 24 hours without receiving surgical intervention...
January 1, 2018: Medicine, Science, and the Law
John Oladapo Obafunwa, Oluwatomi Ajayi, Mathias I Okoye
Medical evidence has continued to be given and evaluated in Nigerian courts since Nigeria's independence from Britain. The attitudes of the courts have been largely varied against a background of the individual judge's appreciation of forensic science and who should be considered an expert witness. The prosecution and defence lawyers equally display limited knowledge of forensic science. This paper reviews some of the decided cases, the reasons for the verdicts, forensic concerns and recommendations for the improvement of the criminal justice system...
January 1, 2018: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Si-Lei Tan, Shu-Ya Peng, Lei Wan, Jie-Min Chen, Wen-Tao Xia
Dental injuries, especially of the incisors, caused by punches in violent criminal attacks could be seen in daily forensic casework involving the identification of injuries to a living body. Sometimes, when there is neither circumstantial evidence nor information about the surrounding circumstances, it is difficult to discern the cause of these injuries and the manner in which they were inflicted. As an example of clinical forensic medicine, we present the case of a 58-year-old woman whose teeth were injured when fighting with her son-in-law over household affairs with no witnesses present...
January 1, 2018: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Roger W Byard
Impalement injuries transfix a victim in an inescapable or helpless position. A study was undertaken at Forensic Science SA from 2002 to 2016 of all impalement deaths. There were six vehicle accidents (M:F=5:1; age 14-67 years, average age 38.5 years) involving impalements with a tree branch ( n=2; groin and chest), a metal pipe ( n=2; leg and head), a metal bridge railing (groin) and a metal fence post (chest). Two cases (both males, aged 47 and 18 years) had slipped on fences/gates, with impalements of the ankle and groin...
January 1, 2018: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Lydia Krexi, Mary N Sheppard
Background In forensic practice, a blow to the chest can lead to sudden cardiac death (SCD). Commotio cordis and contusio cordis are leading causes. Methods From a database of 4678 patients who suffered from SCD, we found three patients with commotio cordis and two patients with contusio cordis. All the patients were examined macroscopically and microscopically and had negative toxicology screen. Results The three patients who died due to commotio cordis were young males (16, 23 and 38 years old). The circumstances of death were: a blow to the chest by a football, by a friend during a party and during an assault...
January 1, 2018: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Dominic Gascho, Michael J Thali, Tilo Niemann
Post-mortem computed tomography (PMCT) has become a standard procedure in many forensic institutes worldwide. However, the standard scan protocols offered by vendors are optimised for clinical radiology and its main considerations regarding computed tomography (CT), namely, radiation exposure and motion artefacts. Thus, these protocols aim at low-dose imaging and fast imaging techniques. However, these considerations are negligible in post-mortem imaging, which allows for significantly increased image quality...
January 1, 2018: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Keith J B Rix
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
January 2018: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Vaibhav Sonar, Sachin Patil
Choking is a form of asphyxia which is caused by an obstruction within the air passages. Here, we report a case of obstruction of the upper respiratory tract due to assassin bug ( Cydnocoris gilvus) where allegations of medical negligence were made by relatives of the deceased. Autopsy findings demonstrated that an insect was present inside the larynx, lodged at the epiglottis. Multiple haemorrhagic patches were present at the base of the tongue, larynx, epiglottis, vocal cords and tracheal bifurcation. As Reduviidae can be successfully used as a biological pest-control agents, they should be used with due precaution...
January 2018: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Ciro Esposito, Maria Escolino, Marcela Bailez, Steve Rothenberg, Mark Davenport, Amulya Saxena, Anthony Caldamone, Philipp Szavay, Paul Philippe, Holger Till, Philippe Montupet, George W Holcomb Rd
This study aimed to assess malpractice in paediatric minimally invasive surgery (MIS), and attitudes, prevention strategies and mechanisms to support surgeons while they are under investigation. An observational, multicentric, questionnaire-based study was conducted. The survey questionnaire was sent via mail, and it comprised four sections. Twenty-four paediatric surgeons (average age 54.6 years), from 13 different countries, participated in this study. The majority had >15 years of experience in MIS. Three (12...
October 2017: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Roger W Byard, John D Gilbert
A 36-year-old woman with a clinical history of Friedreich ataxia and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy was found unexpectedly dead at her home. The heart showed asymmetric left ventricular hypertrophy, with an interventricular septal thickness of 20-25 mm (the remainder of the left ventricular wall measured 15 mm). Histologically, both ventricles had irregular areas of marked myocyte hypertrophy with associated interstitial fibrosis and focal myofibre disarray. There was neuronal loss within the dentate nucleus of the cerebellum, with vacuolation and axonal loss in the dorsal columns and spinocerebellar tracts of the upper cervical spinal cord...
October 2017: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Joseph A Prahlow, Thomas Cameron, Alexander Arendt, Kenneth Cornelis, Anthony Bontrager, Michael S Suth, Lisa Black, Rebbecca Tobey, Sharon Pollock, Shawn Stur, Kenneth Cotter, Joel Gabrielse
Objectives With the widespread use of DNA testing, police, death investigators, and attorneys need to be aware of the capabilities of this technology. This review provides an overview of scenarios where DNA evidence has played a major role in homicide investigations in order to highlight important educational issues for police, death investigators, forensic pathologists, and attorneys. Methods This was a nonrandom, observational, retrospective study. Data were obtained from the collective files of the authors from casework during a 15-year period, from 2000 through 2014...
October 2017: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Durmić Tijana, Čurović Ivana, Bogdanović Milenko, Savić Slobodan
Tracheo-innominate fistula is a rare but recognised life-threatening complication most commonly associated with prolonged endotracheal intubation. We report the case of a 16-year-old boy who developed a tracheo-innominate fistula secondary to the prolonged intubation after a pool accident. After 16 days of hospitalisation, the patient died as a consequence of a massive haemorrhage into the tracheobronchial tree and asphyxia. This is a rare complication, and to our knowledge, no case of tracheo-innominate fistula or any other case series concerning this rare complication has been reported in Serbia recently...
July 2017: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Arnaldo Stanislao Migliorini, Michele Boracchi, Guendalina Gentile, Francesca Maciocco, Andrea Piccinini, Riccardo Zoja
A rare case of homicide with plastic bag suffocation is presented in which forensic genetic investigations were carried out on the inner surface of a plastic bag placed over the head of an elderly woman, bedridden after a stroke. The results obtained suggested that she had been murdered and hinted at the perpetrator of the crime. In fact, it emerged that biological traces left by the victim matched those of her principal caregiver, her psychotic daughter, who later confessed to the crime. The old woman also had a son affected by a serious illness, whose genetic profile was found on the same bag...
July 2017: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Ritesh G Menezes, Huda Fatima, Syed Ather Hussain, Saba Ahmed, Pankaj Kumar Singh, Magdy A Kharoshah, Mohammed Madadin, Pradhum Ram, Sadip Pant, Sushil Allen Luis
Commotio cordis is an increasingly reported fatal mechano-electric syndrome and is the second most common cause of sudden cardiac death in young athletes. It is most commonly associated with a sports-related injury, wherein, there is a high-velocity impact between a projectile and the precordium. By virtue of this impact, malignant arrhythmias consequently develop leading to the individual's immediate demise, accompanied by a relatively normal post-mortem analysis. The importance of an autopsy remains paramount to exclude other causes of sudden death...
July 2017: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Yanning Li, Ruipeng Shen, Runtao Ding, Gehua Wen, Ao Du, Zhibin Dong, Xinghua Ren, Hui Yao, Baoli Zhu, Rubo Li, Yan Lu, Xu Wu
Death from hypothermia usually *We presented a fatal case of hypothermia after being bitten by dog in this article. occurs among people exposed to cold and humid environmental conditions when they are homeless, aged, suffering from natural or psychiatric diseases and drug or alcohol intoxication. A normal healthy person dying from hypothermia due to dog bites is unusual and rare. Here, we present a fatal case of hypothermia following dog bites causing blood loss and multiple wounds on the body. A 56-year-old man was found dead in a remote roadside puddle of a small village, early in the morning...
July 2017: Medicine, Science, and the Law
Subramanian Senthilkumaran, Nanjundan Karthikeyan, Narendra Nath Jena, Ponniah Thirumalaikolundusubramanian
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
July 2017: Medicine, Science, and the Law
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