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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.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006
References in periodicals archive ?
The DOLE said the family of Dayag sought that the NBI conduct an autopsy to determine what caused her death.
However, if an internal autopsy is necessary to determine cause of death, a sufficient volume of blood can be obtained from infants (e.g.
In his editorial, Dr Laposata bemoans the shortcomings of the autopsy, which he claims does not address specific clinical questions, and argues that subspecialists should perform autopsies.
The autopsy report also confirmed 'finger marks' on her neck, suggesting that the girl was strangled to death.
The objectives of this research were to investigate bereaved mother's attitudes towards autopsy, whether consenting to an autopsy or not, and the significance ascribed to autopsy during the bereavement process.
The autopsy revealed that the soldier was returned without his heart, bladder, stomach and brain.
The ignorance about the benefits and cost constraints unfortunately lead to reluctance towards autopsy. A study done by Saller DN et al in 1995 [1] showed that autopsy added significantly to the clinical diagnosis in 44.7% of the cases.
The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of various pathological changes in lung tissue received as autopsy specimens.
The state's high court on Friday ruled on the narrow question of whether the Texas Medical Liability Act applied to Carswell's autopsy. The medical malpractice tort reform law, approved by Texas voters in a 2003 election, made it more difficult to sue health care providers for malpractice.
The ministry's undersecretary Muhammad Abu Sundus told WAFA that the Palestinian doctor Rayan Ali who attended the autopsy performed on Sunday at the Israeli Abu Kabir Forensic Institute confirmed that the last bullet which was fired by an Israeli soldier from a close range after al-Sharif was wounded and no longer posing a threat has led to his death.
According to Ahmad Safiya, lawyer of the Palestinian Prisoners Society, Al-Sharif's family appealed that a Palestinian doctor should take part in the autopsy.
Objective: To determine the difference between diagnosis and misdiagnosis after medical autopsy.