The text opens with an overview of medicolegal investigative systems, namely, the coroner system and the medical examiner system. This is followed by a chapter on factors in determining time of death. These include livor mortis, rigor mortis, body temperature, decomposition, chemical changes in body fluids, gastric emptying and digestion, insect activity, and scene markers and environmental and associated evidence. Subsequent chapters discuss how to recognize and interpret various diseases and injuries in the human body that may produce death. These are discussed under the following general topics: deaths due to natural disease; wounds due to blunt trauma; blunt trauma injuries of the trunk and extremities; trauma to the skull and brain; wounds due to pointed and sharp-edged weapons; asphyxia; deaths due to motor vehicles; airplane crashes; sudden infant death syndrome; neonaticide, infanticide, and child homicide; deaths due to fire; and carbon monoxide poisoning. Other categories of death and injury discussed are drowning; electrocution; hyperthermia and hypothermia; rape; emboli due to air, fat, and amniotic fluid; and drug abuse and drug deaths.
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Vincent Di Maio
Forensic Pathology (Practical Aspects of Criminal and Forensic Investigations)