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The dissection of a dead body by a medical examiner or physician authorized by law to do so in order to determine the cause and time of a death that appears to have resulted from other than natural causes.

This postmortem examination, required by law, is ordered by the local Coroner when a person is suspected to have died by violent or unnatural means. The consent of the decedent's next of kin is not necessary for an authorized autopsy to be held. The medical findings must be presented at an inquest and might be used as evidence in a police investigation and a subsequent criminal prosecution.


Forensic Science.


References in periodicals archive ?
Frasso said numerous bruises to the girl's torso and "significant" bruising on her back were noted during the autopsy.
The value of an autopsy was also shown in a claim that a patient was improperly intubated.
2) The time-honored autopsy is more valuable than ever.
That said, Alien Autopsy remains an enjoyable romp and when it does work, it does so in fine style.
HMHB plays several key roles in the autopsy registry.
In many European countries, the autopsy rate in such cases stands at more than 70 percent.
Now the station is to broadcast a documentary which will feature the autopsy of a twin boy who had been growing inside his brother.
Professor Gunther von Hagens performed the autopsy on the body of a 72-year-old man in front of a paying audience.
Thirty-four viewers complained to the commission on the grounds of taste and decency after the late-night broadcast of Professor Gunther von Hagens' live autopsy last November.
Generally, when an autopsy is required, a medical examiner does not need consent from the decedent's next of kin before doing the procedure.
Waller County officials have released the autopsy report for Sandra Bland, the 28-year-old African-American woman found dead in the county jail on July 13.