Turkish Journal of Geriatrics 2013 , Vol 16, Issue 4
Fatma YÜCEL BEYAZTAŞ1, Celal BÜTÜN1, Erdal ÖZER2, Muharrem ÇELİK3
1Cumhuriyet Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi Adli Tıp Anabilim Dalı SİVAS
2Gaziosmanpaşa Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi Adli Tıp Anabilim Dalı TOKAT
3Adalet Bakanlığı Adli Tıp Kurumu Başkanlığı Ordu Adli Tıp Şube Müdürlüğü ORDU
Introduction: Aging is a physiological phenomenon, and the elderly group constitutes individuals aged 65 years and over. In this study we aimed to discuss socio-demographic and forensic medicine investigations in the elderly, together with autopsy findings.

Materials and Method: Among a total of 540 cases autopsied for judicial reasons during a four-year period (2006-2009) in the morgue of Cumhuriyet University Hospital, 123 of them were evaluated as cases of elderly death. The cases were analyzed with respect to sociodemographic and forensic medicine parameters: gender, age, type of death according to crime scene investigation, date of death, crime scene and autopsy findings.

Results: The majority of elderly deaths, whose cause of death was frequently (41.5%) reported as associated with suspicious causes, were of male gender aged between 65-96 years(73.2%), with most (60.2%) belonging to the 65-74 age group. A greater number (32.5%) of fatal events occurred during the spring months.

Conclusion: The causes of deaths of the elderly forensic cases are very important, as they are in all criminal cases. Circumstances of death, crime scene investigations, necropsic examination, laboratory analysis, and assessment of medicolegal investigation documents should be performed in the determination of manner of death. Therefore, if detailed examination is not possible then manner of death can not be exactly determined. In this study, the most common cause was suspicious deaths, followed by traffic accidents, falls from a height, hanging, poisoning, fire arm injuries, and freezing to death. Keywords : Aging; Autopsy; Aged; Cause of Death; Forensic Medicine