School of Forensic Sciences, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, UK
Received date: June 06, 2016; Accepted date: June 14, 2016; Published date: June 22, 2016
Citation: Sibte H (2016) The Rise of Virtual Autopsy. J Foren Path 1:e103. doi:10.4172/jfp.1000e103
Copyright: © 2016 Sibte H. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
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Background: Road Traffic Acciden trelated (RTA) deaths are common in young Ghanaian adults and are therefore of public health concern. Reliable data on the categories of victims who are commonly involved and the patterns and outcomes RTA are limited in Ghana. The aim of this study was to describe the spectrum of road traffic related- deaths in Accra Ghana, the demographic characteristics of the victims and the immediate causes of death using a retrospective autopsy study. Materials and methods: This was a retrospective autopsy study conducted in our institution from 1st January 2004 to 31st December 2013. The data was analysed using SPSS software (Version 23). Results: During the period under review, 6.1% of all coroner autopsy performed in our institutions were RTArelated deaths. The younger age 20-29 years group, were commonly involved (22.2%) with male predominance (77.7%). The victims of RTA-related deaths were pedestrians (59.9%), passengers (19.3%), motor riders (8.7%), drivers (6.8%) cyclists (2.2%) and pillion riders (1.5%). The mean ages in years of these victims were: pedestrians (37.6), passengers (37.0), drivers (39.1), motor riders (32.0) pillion riders (31.7) and cyclists (37.2). The common immediate causes of deaths in all the victims were head injury, multiple bony and soft tissue injuries. Conclusion: Approximately 6.1% of all coroner autopsies performed during the study period were RTA-related deaths, particularly the young male adults. The most affected victims were the pedestrian knockdowns, passengers and motor riders. Majority of the victims died of severe head injury and multiple bony and soft tissues injuries and died as a result of these injuries
Forensic autopsy practice in its current shape remains the gold standard however radiological imaging is continuously developing and is becoming more known and acceptable within forensic pathology practice. Radiology has been used for years for determining age of individuals and assessing bone injuries. However with the development of new radiological techniques like Computerized Tomography (CT) and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and their application to assess soft and hard injuries has ushered a new era in forensic pathology. The technique having originated in Sweden has now become a standard technique in major centres in Japan, US, Australia, and many European countries. The most important immediate steps needed are that these examinations are explicitly defined within the statutes of law as well as thorough quality control procedures developed, so that the procedures are standardized and become more acceptable for the courts of law. Some of this work has already started e.g. in the UK in 2013 the Chief coroner issued guidance on postmortem imaging . The Royal College of Pathologists UK has outlined the standards of post-mortem imaging examinations being performed for medicolegal purposes . This report has determined the limitations of the procedures, detailed guidelines and also provided a CT protocol for post-mortem imaging. The Society of Radiographers has recently produced their standards for post-mortem imaging examinations and has included the need for competency standards for radiographers and the need for auditing the equipment besides other important aspects . There is acute need for global standardized best practice procedures for using this tool in forensic pathology in a more robust manner . It still remains to be seen if post-mortem imaging will replace traditional autopsy but it has definitely risen to be an effective adjunct procedure.