Evidence of arteriosclerosis in cremated remains

Michael W. Warren, Anthony B. Falsetti, William F. Hamilton, Lowell J. Levine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

Severely burned or cremated human remains (i.e., cremains) are among the most challenging cases investigated by forensic pathologists, odontologists, and anthropologists. Exposure to extreme heat of long duration destroys all organic components of the body, leaving only the inorganic component of the skeleton. The numerous calcined osseous or dental fragments that remain after the cremation process rarely convey useful information to the investigator. In most cases, it is associated nonosseous artifacts that provide evidence of the decedent's identity. In a case investigated at the University of Florida's C. A. Pound Human Identification Laboratory, as well as in several cases examined during data collection for a research project, several fragments were identified as calcined plaque tubules from sclerotic blood vessels. These tubules provide direct evidence that the cremated individual had a variety of arteriosclerosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)277-280
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology
Volume20
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 4 1999

Keywords

  • Arteriosclerosis
  • Cremation
  • Forensic anthropology
  • Human identification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine

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