If you watch any of the CSI series on television, you probably have already seen a glimpse or two at the morgue on the shows. With a virtual autopsy the pathologist has a permanent 3D record of the body, so the use of CT scans and MRI could be the next tools in line. Of course, there’s still the option of testing body parts, etc. as well and some of those procedures will more than likely always be there. BD
Many people hate the idea of a loved one being dissected – even if it could provide vital clues about how and why they died. But it may not be necessary for much longer. A growing number of countries, including the UK, Australia, US, and Japan, are looking towards virtual autopsies as an alternative to opening the bodies of people who die in suspicious circumstances.
Michael Thali at the University of Bern, Switzerland, who developed the Virtopsy, is now combining his reconstructions of bodies, with 3D reconstructions of crime scenes and objects or weapons that may have caused the injuries or death.
In doing so, he hopes to get a clearer picture of the sequence of events that caused the injuries.