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Role of Postmortem CT in the Forensic Evaluation of Hemopericardium


Filograna, Laura; Pugliese, Luca; D'Onofrio, Adolfo; Meucci, Rosaria; Thali, Michael J; Floris, Roberto (2019). Role of Postmortem CT in the Forensic Evaluation of Hemopericardium. Seminars in Ultrasound, Ct, and Mr, 40(1):79-85.

Abstract

Hemopericardium (HP) is defined as the accumulation of blood in the pericardial sack. In a clinical setting, prompt identification of the presence of HP is of huge importance, because HP can result in pericardial tamponade. While echocardiography remains the most appropriate method for the evaluation of pericardial effusions in the clinical setting, postmortem imaging computed tomography (PMCT) is a valuable instrument for detecting the presence of HP and in evaluating its significance in causing mechanical impairment of cardiac activity and finally death. In this article, the actual knowledge on PMCT imaging findings related to HP are reported, with particular attention to the assessment of its significance with relation to the forensic diagnosis of the cause of death. According to the present work, the diagnosis of pericardial tamponade due to HP might be considered one of the critical fields of investigation where classical autopsy may fail and where PMCT imaging may offer its most important aids.

Abstract

Hemopericardium (HP) is defined as the accumulation of blood in the pericardial sack. In a clinical setting, prompt identification of the presence of HP is of huge importance, because HP can result in pericardial tamponade. While echocardiography remains the most appropriate method for the evaluation of pericardial effusions in the clinical setting, postmortem imaging computed tomography (PMCT) is a valuable instrument for detecting the presence of HP and in evaluating its significance in causing mechanical impairment of cardiac activity and finally death. In this article, the actual knowledge on PMCT imaging findings related to HP are reported, with particular attention to the assessment of its significance with relation to the forensic diagnosis of the cause of death. According to the present work, the diagnosis of pericardial tamponade due to HP might be considered one of the critical fields of investigation where classical autopsy may fail and where PMCT imaging may offer its most important aids.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Legal Medicine
Dewey Decimal Classification:340 Law
610 Medicine & health
Uncontrolled Keywords:Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
Language:English
Date:1 February 2019
Deposited On:15 Mar 2019 07:19
Last Modified:15 Mar 2019 09:00
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0887-2171
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1053/j.sult.2018.10.005
PubMed ID:30686371

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