An autopsy is an examination of the body after death. It usually consists of an external and an internal examination of the body. The external examination also documents identifying features such as scars, tattoos or other markings which may assist in the identification of the body. The internal examination looks at the internal organs to document any natural disease processes and/or injury .Its purpose is to learn the truth about the persons health during life and how the person really died, These situations include, violent deaths such as homicides, accidents, and suicides. Other categories are suspicious deaths, sudden and expected deaths, deaths in children and infants, prisoners, persons under the care of an institution, situations where illicit drugs or alcohol may have contributed to the death, deaths occurring during or in close proximity to a surgical procedure, deaths in individuals not under the care of a physician or when the private physician is unable or unwilling to certify the death certificate, and deaths when there is suspicion of a public health threat.
An autopsy is performed by specially trained physician, a forensic pathologist. They are performed in the medical examiner's or coroner's office. Sometimes they are performed in a funeral home or hospital setting.
The basic autopsy is performed by making a y shape incision from shoulders to mid chest and down to the pubic region. If the head is to be open the pathologist makes a second incision across the head, joining the bony prominence just below and behind the ear. The pathologist uses scalpel for these incisions. There is almost no bleeding, since a dead body has no blood pressure except that produced by gravity . The scalp and the soft tissue in front of the chest are then reflected back. Then the cartilages that join the ribs to the breastbone is cut in order to enter the chest cavity .this is done using a scalp, a saw, or a special knife. When the breast bone and...
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