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Dithranol: An Unusual Agent to Produce Artificial (False) Bruise: A Case Report

Chavali, Krishnadutt H. MD, MBBS, DNB, PGDHA; Dasari, Harish MD, MBBS

American Journal of Forensic Medicine & Pathology: September 2012 - Volume 33 - Issue 3 - p 253–255
doi: 10.1097/PAF.0b013e3182198659
Case Reports

Abstract: Injuries are simulated by people for various reasons and may be labeled as “false/fictitious/forged.” These may be self-inflicted or self-suffered. One such “injury” is an artificial/false bruise that may be produced by applying the juices of various irritant vegetable poisons. However, the present case is of an inmate of jail who used dithranol for producing 20 such artificial bruises on the back of his body. The purpose of such an act was to bring a charge of torture/beating against the jail officials.

A good, thorough history taking and detailed and meticulous examination of the affected area, supplemented by relevant investigations and photography by a trained forensic expert, are a must to differentiate the “true” from the “false.”

From the Department of Forensic Medicine, Government Medical College & Hospital, Chandigarh, India.

Manuscript received August 24, 2010; accepted September 25, 2010.

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

Reprints: Krishnadutt H. Chavali, MD, MBBS, DNB, PGDHA, Department of Forensic Medicine, Government Medical College & Hospital, Chandigarh, India. E-mail: drkhchavali@gmail.com.

© 2012 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.