ISSN : 2146-3123
E-ISSN : 2146-3131

Analysis of Forensic Death Statistics From 2013 to 2022 and Autopsy Practices in Türkiye
Cemil Çelik1, Uğur Ata1, Naile Esra Saka2
1Forensic Medicine, Council of Forensic Medicine, Kahramanmaraş, Türkiye
2Forensic Medicine, Tekirdağ Namık Kemal University, Tekirdağ, Türkiye
DOI : 10.4274/balkanmedj.galenos.2023.2023-9-10
Pages : 38-46

Abstract

Background: Autopsy rates are significantly lower that what they should be worldwide. Additionally, autopsy practices vary between countries.
Aims: To examine the autopsy rates, the distribution and temporal changes of forensic autopsy cases, so as to identify the areas in the death investigation system that require improvement in Türkiye.
Study Design: Cross-sectional study.
Methods: “Forensic Death Examination Statistics” of the Council of Forensic Medicine (CFM) and “Death Statistics” of the Turkish Statistical Institute were compared and analyzed for the years 2013-2022 in Türkiye.
Results: The number of forensic death cases sent to the CFM has increased over time. For all causes of deaths, the autopsy rate is approximately 3.6-4.8%. The cause-specific mortality rates for deaths due to sharp instrument trauma, blunt trauma, occupational accident, undetermined, and poisoning have increased over the years. “The percentage of “undetermined” deaths, which are important to demonstrate negative autopsies, was 14.2% in 2021.
Conclusion: Although the autopsy rates have slightly increased in a volatile trend over time in Türkiye, they are still not at the desired level. Thus, it is essential to further raise awareness among all professionals involved in death investigations about the importance of autopsies.

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