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Current issues in postmortem imaging of perinatal and forensic childhood deaths

Arthurs, OJ; Hutchinson, JC; Sebire, NJ; (2017) Current issues in postmortem imaging of perinatal and forensic childhood deaths. Forensic Science, Medicine, and Pathology , 13 (1) pp. 58-66. 10.1007/s12024-016-9821-x. Green open access

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Abstract

Perinatal autopsy practice is undergoing a state of change with the introduction of evidence-based cross-sectional imaging, driven primarily by parental choice. In particular, the introduction of post mortem magnetic resonance imaging (PMMR) has helped to advance less-invasive perinatal autopsy in the United Kingdom (UK) and Europe. However, there are limitations to PMMR and other imaging techniques which need to be overcome, particularly with regard to imaging very small fetuses. Imaging is also now increasingly used to investigate particular deaths in childhood, such as suspected non-accidental injury (NAI) and sudden unexpected death in infancy (SUDI). Here we focus on current topical developments the field, with particular emphasis on the application of imaging to perinatal autopsy, and pediatric forensic deaths. Different imaging modalities and their relative advantages and disadvantages are discussed, together with other benefits of more advanced cross-sectional imaging which currently lie in the research domain. Whilst variations in local imaging service provision and need may determine different practice patterns, and access to machines and professionals with appropriate expertise and experience to correctly interpret the findings may limit current practices, we propose that gold standard perinatal and pediatric autopsy services would include complete PMMR imaging prior to autopsy, with PMCT in suspicious childhood deaths. This approach would provide maximal diagnostic yield to the pathologist, forensic investigator and most importantly, the parents.

Type: Article
Title: Current issues in postmortem imaging of perinatal and forensic childhood deaths
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1007/s12024-016-9821-x
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12024-016-9821-x
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author(s) 2017. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
Keywords: Autopsy, Forensic, Imaging, MRI, Pediatric, Perinatal
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > ICH Developmental Neurosciences Prog
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > ICH Pop, Policy and Practice Prog
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1536933
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