Bodies found in water present several diagnostic challenges for the forensic examiner, such as the identification of the time and mechanism of death, the postmortem submersion time, and above all the circumstances of drowning. We report the case of a 33-year-old security guard found dead in Venice, in the water of the lagoon, who at autopsy presented a previously undiagnosed hydrocephalus with macrocephaly. The victim remained asymptomatic until 2 months before death and had never undergone a neurological or radiological examination. In the article, we emphasize the need to perform a thorough autopsy in all suspected drownings, discuss the etiopathogenesis of the neurological disease and hypothesize a possible relationship between the hydrocephalus and the drowning accident. Finally, we discuss the major clinical and forensic implications of macrocephaly and hydrocephalus in adults.

Fatal Drowning Accident and Undiagnosed Hydrocephalus

G. Cecchetto;A. Feletti;M. Montisci;A. Cecchetto;G. Viel
2010

Abstract

Bodies found in water present several diagnostic challenges for the forensic examiner, such as the identification of the time and mechanism of death, the postmortem submersion time, and above all the circumstances of drowning. We report the case of a 33-year-old security guard found dead in Venice, in the water of the lagoon, who at autopsy presented a previously undiagnosed hydrocephalus with macrocephaly. The victim remained asymptomatic until 2 months before death and had never undergone a neurological or radiological examination. In the article, we emphasize the need to perform a thorough autopsy in all suspected drownings, discuss the etiopathogenesis of the neurological disease and hypothesize a possible relationship between the hydrocephalus and the drowning accident. Finally, we discuss the major clinical and forensic implications of macrocephaly and hydrocephalus in adults.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/2487022
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