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The Densities of Visceral Organs and the Extent of Pathologic Changes

Bai, Rufeng PhD; Yu, Xiaojun PhD; Wang, Dian MD; Lv, Junyao MD; Xu, Guangtao MD; Lai, Xiaoping MD

The American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology: June 2009 - Volume 30 - Issue 2 - p 148-151
doi: 10.1097/PAF.0b013e3181875ab2
Original Article

In this study, we designed a new device to measure the density of internal organs and correlated with their pathologic changes. The densities of hearts, livers, lungs and brains from 169 autopsy cases were measured with different extent of pathologic changes by an integrated volume-density meter. All samples were divided into 2 groups: intact and pathologic groups. The extent of pathologic changes was classified into 3 stages: slight edema, intermediate edema, severe edema (or severe fatty degeneration only for livers) according to the histologic features. Results show that there were significant differences between each subgroup and intact group and the density was closely correlated with pathologic changes. Therefore, the external parameter of density might offer some clues to its pathologic changes, such as edema and fatty changes.

From the Department of Forensic Science, Medical College of Shantou University, Shantou, Guangdong, China.

Manuscript received April 26, 2007; accepted June 4, 2007.

Supported by grant of technological-plan project of Guangdong province.

Reprints: Xiaojun Yu, PhD, No. 22, Xinling Rd, Shantou, Guangdong, China, 515041. E-mail:

© 2009 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.