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A review on the evolution and characteristics of post-mortem imaging techniques

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Original languageEnglish
Article number200420
JournalForensic Imaging
Volume23
Early online date13 Nov 2020
DOIs
Accepted/In press11 Nov 2020
E-pub ahead of print13 Nov 2020
PublishedDec 2020

King's Authors

Abstract

Up until the beginning of the 21st century, the technique of choice for the forensic medical examination of a deceased individual was the traditional medical autopsy. This, however, has begun to change with the introduction of post-mortem imaging. Post-mortem imaging, or ‘virtual autopsy’, is a novel area of radiology that utilises non-invasive imaging techniques for the examination of a body. Many of the techniques used to conduct a virtual autopsy are more commonly employed within clinical diagnostic, such as computed tomography or magnetic resonance imaging. In recent years, post-mortem imaging has gathered significant momentum as a robust and objective methodology capable of compiling relevant intelligence without disturbing a body. This review identifies and describes the techniques currently available for post-mortem imaging and provides an insight on their advantages and disadvantages compared to traditional autopsy methods. The aim of this paper is to highlight the most relevant milestones accomplished in this field and the potential application of this technique within current forensic frameworks.

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