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American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology

Milenko Bogdanović, Bojana Radnić, Slobodan Savić, Vesna Popović, Tijana Durmić
We present a case of 19-year-old female patient, who was injured in childhood and subsequently developed hydrocephalus, chronic elevation of intracranial pressure (ICP), and a copper-beaten skull appearance. Chronic hydrocephalus leads to an increase in intraventricular pressure, causing ventricular expansion and dislocation of adjacent cerebral structures. According to literature data, it has been hypothesized that chronically elevated ICP in persons with craniosynostosis, and other developmental structural abnormalities of the skull, may induce bone remodeling...
November 7, 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Rana Adel, Hala Mohamed Ahmed, Osama A Hassan, Ehab A Abdelgawad
Sex determination is an initial and essential component of any medicolegal investigations. However, sometimes only cranial remains are available. The objective of this study was to determine sex using 12 craniofacial measurements in multidetector computed tomographic images of 150 Egyptian subjects (80 men and 70 women), with age ranging from 18 to 60 years. The results revealed a significant increase in the mean of all craniofacial measurements in men in comparison with women (P < 0.05). Bizygomatic breadth was the single most discriminant dimorphic parameter with an accuracy of 74%...
November 7, 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Rosario Barranco, Andrea Molinelli, Raffaella Gentile, Francesco Ventura
Meigs syndrome is the triad of ascites, hydrothorax, and benign ovarian tumor (mostly fibroids). It is a diagnosis of exclusion, and the characteristic symptoms disappear after resection of the tumor. Instead, in Pseudo-Meigs syndrome, the triad includes a nonfibroma ovarian tumor. The latter may consist of benign tumors (ie, of fallopian tube or uterus, struma ovarii, and ovarian leiomyomas) but can also comprise ovarian or metastatic gastrointestinal malignancies.The authors describe a case of sudden death in a 43-year-old woman, with no noteworthy reported history of present illness or medical history and in apparently good health before death...
October 23, 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Li Ma, Nathan Milne, Geoffrey Strutton, Beng Beng Ong
Venous malformations (VMs) are the most common vascular malformations, and their diagnosis can be challenging. They may develop in any region of the body, with highly variable clinical presentations. Although they typically present early in life, many case reports have documented the sudden appearance of a previously unrecognized venous malformation in adulthood. Pain is the major complaint in most of the cases, and other complications include phlebolith formation and bleeding. To our knowledge, fatal hemorrhage from a VM has not previously been reported in the medical literature...
October 23, 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Roger W Byard
A 3-month-old boy presented to hospital in cardiac arrest, dehydrated, with a blood sodium of 158.4 mmol/L. He had been febrile, not feeding normally and refusing fluids. Despite attempts at resuscitation with rehydration, he was declared dead. At autopsy, the kidneys were uniformly enlarged with thrombi within intraparenchymal tributaries of the renal veins bilaterally. Death was due to bilateral renal venous system thrombosis with hypernatremic dehydration. It is likely that the dehydration resulted both from increased requirements for fluid due to fever and from inadequate oral intake...
October 20, 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Leigh Hlavaty, William Kasper, LokMan Sung
Celebratory use of fireworks has been an integral part of human civilization for over millennia. While the majority of firework use is festive, their explosive nature can result in traumatic injuries and death. The authors present the death of a 21-year-old man found unresponsive on the floor of his parent's garage with extensive damage to his head after an explosion was heard. Firearms could not be found, but there were unexploded homemade and commercially produced firecrackers and components for the manufacture of additional firecrackers...
October 20, 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Simone Cappelletti, Daria Piacentino, Costantino Ciallella
A systematic review of the literature regarding drug packaging methods in body packing and materials used is presented, with the aim (a) to summarize data regarding the packaging methods adopted by drug trafficking organizations, (b) to support forensic pathologists and police forces to classify and describe drug packages, (c) to propose a new classification for drug packaging techniques, and (d) to better clarify the impact of packaging methods on radiological detectability.Packaging methods have been described in 2981 cases, permitting us to summarize the different materials used and to propose a new classification for packaging method based on the materials used...
October 10, 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Aytul Bugra, Taner Das
Volatile substance addiction and toxic gas inhalation are now an important health problem. The pleasure-based inhalation of butane gas, also known as lighter refill gas, is especially prevalent among children and young people. The most important reasons for this situation are that they are cheap and easy to obtain and lack of legal supervision. The exhaled gas is absorbed through the alveolar surface and rapidly enters the bloodstream and leads to clinical signs. It can cause dizziness, nausea, vomiting, confusion, hallucinations, and euphoria in the acute phase...
October 8, 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Avneesh Gupta, Jaclyn Furman, Kilak Kesha, Francisco Diaz, Carl J Schmidt
Classic "bread-and-butter" appearance of fibrinous pericarditis had been described in rheumatic disease and other immunologic diseases such as systemic lupus erythematosus, post-myocardial infarct, uremia, tuberculosis, radiation effects, bacterial, and viral etiology. In most of the described cases, pericarditis occurs as a delayed complication. We present a case of a 21-year-old white woman who was seen in the emergency department to rule out pulmonary embolism for shortness of breath, chest pain, and lightheadedness...
October 2, 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Nathaniel J Balmert, Joseph A Prahlow
Childhood idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension (CIPAH) represents a rare disorder of childhood characterized by dyspnea, exercise limitation, and syncope. Common organ-specific pathology includes right ventricular myocardial hypertrophy. The case presented represents a classic case of CIPAH, where death was partially attributable to an unrecognized esophageal intubation, which was placed during emergency transport to an emergency department. The features of CIPAH are presented, along with a discussion related to esophageal intubation and death...
August 30, 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Matthew J Cecchini, Michael J Shkrum
Self-inflicted gunshot wounds are a common cause of firearm-related deaths. The appearance and location of the entry wound, other concomitant findings at autopsy, and correlation with the scene and circumstances are critical in determining the manner of death. A case of a 72-year-old man with a self-inflicted gunshot wound with an unusual injury pattern is described. There was a contact range gunshot entry in the right temple, and an exit wound was seen in the left parietal region. There was a re-entry with an associated exit wound on the left hand...
August 24, 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
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December 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Francesco Lupariello, Serena Maria Curti, Giancarlo Di Vella
The diagnosis of lethal commotio cordis (CC) is really complex. The forensic pathologist's task is even more relevant when he/she has to explain a CC diagnosis caused by an assault in a trial. The purpose of this study was to analyze the literature on lethal CC as a result of violent attacks and identify relevant parameters that may help in the diagnosis. A review of the relevant articles was performed. Fifty-two cases of CC caused by violent attacks were identified. The collected data allowed to confirm the following literature's criteria for CC diagnosis in case of assaults: witnessed occurrence of a blunt, nonpenetrating blow to the chest preceding cardiovascular collapse; absence of structural damage to the sternum, ribs, or heart itself; and absence of any underlying cardiovascular abnormalities (such as other causes of sudden death)...
December 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Rory A Guenther, Walter L Kemp
While the characteristic features of nephrotic syndrome (ie, proteinuria, hypoalbuminemia, peripheral edema, and hyperlipidemia) are well known, the association of nephrotic syndrome and the risk of thromboembolic events is not as often appreciated and may be overlooked. This report describes a 10-year-old boy with focal segmental glomerulosclerosis who died following a saddle pulmonary thromboembolus, with near-complete occlusion of the left and right pulmonary arteries. The gross appearance of the thrombus suggested organization and histologic changes within the wall of the pulmonary artery indicated a period of at least 3 or more hours to a few days since the event occurred...
December 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Franchi Angélique, Gauchotte Guillaume, Gambier Nicolas, Raul Jean Sébastien, Martrille Laurent
In this daily practice, the forensic pathologist is rarely confronted with postmortem hyperthermia associated with the rapid onset of rigor mortis. We report 2 similar cases where the rectal temperature value taken during the on-scene investigations by the forensic pathologist was greater than 40°C (104°F) in both cases, and rigor mortis was complete within less than 6 hours postmortem. The first case was due to a deadly intoxication by ecstasy and the second one to the deadly association of methadone and a possible neuroleptic malignant syndrome...
December 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Papanu Suttipasit
Sexual assault persists as a global problem. Even when sexual assault does not result in obvious visible wounds, genitoanal injury must be evaluated because it is often pertinent for legal outcomes. Macroscopic ("naked eye") examination is valuable when colposcope is not available or when patients do not consent. This study reviewed the genitoanal injuries of 117 sexually assaulted adult women evaluated macroscopically. Genitoanal injury prevalence was 47%, and nongenitoanal injury prevalence was at 44%...
December 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Rosario Barranco, Andrea Molinelli, Francesco Ventura
Fatalities due to stabbings are usually caused by large blood vessels or organs injuries resulting in hemorrhagic shock. Vagal inhibition from a stab to the neck is an undeniably exceptional event, infrequently described in the literature. In our case report, we describe one such fatality.The body of a deceased 38-year-old man was found near a public garden. According to a bystander, the victim had been assaulted by 2 individuals, sustaining a stab wound to the neck with a broken glass bottle. At the autopsy, there was a large, inverted L-shaped cut wound in the left cervical region, measuring approximately 4...
December 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Leigh Hlavaty, LokMan Sung
Instruments that create stab wounds are required to possess tips of sufficient strength and rigidity to breach the integrity of the skin. Knives, the most common weapons used to create stab wounds, have cutting edges that cleave the skin, leaving unabraded margins. On rare occasions, blunt objects are driven with sufficient force to pierce the skin and become impaled within the body. The morphologic differences between the cutaneous injuries and wound tracks of stab wounds from sharp objects and impalement with blunt ones provide clear delineation of the two...
December 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Bogdanovic Milenko, Savic Slobodan, Curovic Ivana, Radnic Bojana, Durmic Tijana
Iatrogenic penetrating injuries of the thoracic aorta are rare. When surgical treatment is delayed or unavailable, they are associated with high mortality. Herein we present a case of a 36-year-old woman who had a sternal marrow biopsy performed due to laboratory-confirmed pancytopenia. Autopsy revealed 4 needle punctures extending through the full thickness of the upper right quarter of the sternum. Mediastinal soft tissue and the upper part of the pericardium were diffusely effused with blood. On the aortic arch, between the innominate artery and the left common carotid artery, we found a linear penetrating injury (2 mm in length)...
December 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Monia Lusetti, Manuela Licata, Enrico Silingardi, Alessandro Bonsignore, Cristian Palmiere
Image- and performance-enhancing drugs include a wide range of substances used to promote physical changes to enhance appearance. Anabolic androgen steroids are the most widely used image- and performance-enhancing drugs along with a wide variety of additional substances. The aim of this study was to identify the pathological changes pertaining to the cardiovascular system possibly involved in the death and characterize the substances associated with steroid use and their possible role in the death. A series of deaths involving image- and performance-enhancing drug users were selected...
December 2018: American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
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