Postmortem Non-Invasive Virtual Autopsy: Death by Hanging in a Car

    Volume 50, Issue 2 (March 2005)

    ISSN: 0022-1198

    CODEN: JFSOAD

    Published Online: 5 January 2005

    Page Count: 6


    Jackowski, C
    Institute of Forensic Medicine, University of Berne, 3012 Bern,

    Aghayev, E
    Institute of Forensic Medicine, University of Berne, 3012 Bern,

    Sonnenschein, M
    University of Bern, 3010 Bern,

    Thali, M
    Institute of Forensic Medicine, University of Berne, 3012 Bern,

    Dirnhofer, R
    Institute of Forensic Medicine, University of Berne, 3012 Bern,

    Bolliger, S
    Institute of Forensic Medicine, University of Berne, 3012 Bern,

    (Received 22 February 2004; accepted 9 October 2004)

    Abstract

    A body was found behind a car with a noose tied around its neck, the other end of the rope tied to a tree. Apparently the man committed suicide by driving away with the noose tied around his neck and was dragged out of the car through the open hatchback. postmortem multislice-computed tomography (MSCT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) indicated that the cause of death was cerebral hypoxia due to classic strangulation by hanging, and not due to a brainstem lesion because of a hang-man fracture as would be expected in such a dynamic situation. Furthermore, the MRI displayed intramuscular haemorrhage, bleeding into the clavicular insertions of the sternocleidomastoid muscles and subcutaneous neck tissue. We conclude that MSCT and MRI are useful instruments with an increased value compared with 2D radiographs to augment the external findings of bodies when an autopsy is refused. But further postmortem research and comparing validation is needed.


    Paper ID: JFS2004070

    DOI: 10.1520/JFS2004070

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    Title Postmortem Non-Invasive Virtual Autopsy: Death by Hanging in a Car
    Symposium , 0000-00-00
    Committee E30