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Media Alert: Questions Remain in Michael Jackson Autopsy - College of American Pathologists Has Forensic Pathologist Available to Answer Reporter Questions
Date:6/29/2009

What can an autopsy tell you? A pathologist's role is critical in diagnosing cause of death

(Vocus) June 29, 2009 --

WHAT: New questions surround singer Michael Jackson's death.

In cases of sudden, unexpected death, a forensic pathologist, often working in a Medical Examiner's Office, will perform an autopsy to determine the cause and manner of death. The pathologist's detailed external and internal examination will document diseases which could have contributed to death. These findings are then correlated with the clinical scenario, radiographic studies, toxicological results, and microscopic analysis to reach a final determination.

In an autopsy when a pathologist examines a body, they ask questions:

 
  • Why did the heart stop and why isn't cardiac arrest a "cause of death"?
  • What likely caused the death based on the findings?
  • Was a dangerous mix of prescription drugs found?
  • Were there other factors involved?
  • What can an autopsy tell you?
  • What would you expect to find with a second autopsy?
  • Why is the final cause of death not known until after toxicology results are available? What are toxicology results? How long do they take? Why so long?

The answers to these questions will help to determine the patient's cause and manner of death. By recognizing and reporting these findings, the pathologist can play an important role in preventing similar deaths.

WHO: Stephen J. Cina, MD, FCAP, Deputy Chief Medical Examiner of the Broward County Medical Examiner's O
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Source: PRWeb
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Media Alert: Questions Remain in Michael Jackson Autopsy - College of American Pathologists Has Forensic Pathologist Available to Answer Reporter Questions
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