Forensic Medicine Definition of Terms
Abrasion - a skin injury caused by scraping off of superficial skin due to friction against a rough surface.
Adipocere - a peculiar waxy substance consisting of salts and fatty acids and formed from the decomposition of corpse tissues, specially in moist habitats, also called grave-wax.
Aedeagus - the reproductive organ of a male insect.
Agnosia - impairment or loss associated with brain injury of the ability to recognized or comprehend the meaning of stimuli including familiar objects and and symbols.
Airways - any part of the respiratory tract thought which air passes during breathing.
Alveolar ducts - the smallest of the lungs airways that connect terminal bronchioles and alveolar sacs, sometimes called bronchioles.
Alveoli - microscopic air sacs in which gas exchange between the blood and the lungs occur.
Amnesia - partial or total loss of memory for past experiences.
Anarthria - loss of the ability to form words accurately caused by brain lesion or damage to peripheral nerves that carry impulses to the articulatory muscles.
Anemia - any condition in which the number of red blood cells, the amount of hemoglobin, and the volume of packed red blood cells per 100 ml of blood are less that normal.It may result from increased destruction of red blood cells, excessive blood loss or decreased production of red cells.
Aplastic anemia - anemia caused by aplasia of bone marrow or its
destruction by chemical agents or physical factors.
Auto immune hemolytic - acquired disorder characterized by
premature erythrocyte destruction owing to abnormalities in the
individuals own immune system.
Hemolytic - anemia caused by hemolysis of red blood cells
resulting in reduction of normal red cell life span.
Iron-deficiency anemia - anemia resulting from a demand on
stored iron greater than can be met.
Megaloblastic anemia - anemia in which megaloblasts are found
in the blood, usually due to a deficiency of folic acid or vitamin
Microangiopathic hymolytic - a hemolytic process associated
with thrombotic thrombotic purpura, prosthetic heart valve, and
burns. It is visualized in the peripheral blood smear by
fragmentation of the red cells and other bizarre morphology.
Pernicious - a type of megaloblastic anemia due to a deficiency of
vitamin B12, directly linked to absence of intrinsic factor.
Sickle-cell - hereditary chronic anemia in which abnormal sickle or
crescent shaped erythrocytes are present.It is due to the
presence of hemoglobin S in the red blood cells.
Antibody - a protein produced for body defense in response to an antigen.An antibody is a substance that appears in the plasma or body fluids as a result of stimulation by an antigen and will react specifically with that antigen in some observable way.
Anticoagulant - a substance such as EDTA that prevent coagulation or clotting of the blood.
Antigen - a foreign substance, usually a protein, capable of stimulating an antibody response for body defense.Any substance that when introduced parenterally into an individual lacking lacking the substance,stimulates the production of an antibody that when mixed with the antibody react with it in some observable way.
Aplasia - failure of an organ or tissue to develop normally.
Asphyxia - lack of oxygen or excess of carbon dioxide in the body.Asphyxia may lead to unconsciousness, seizures, damage to various sensory systems and death.
Asthma - a chronic condition in which constriction (spasm) of the bronchial tubes occurs in response to irritation, allergy, or other stimuli.
Atherosclerosis - deposition of plaques of cholesterol esters in blood vessels, resulting in the narrowing of the vessel lumen and restricting blood flow.
Atrophy - a loss of function due to age, disuse, or disease.
Autism - mental introversion in which thinking is governed by personal needs and the world is perceived in terms of wishes rather than reality.Extreme preoccupations with one's own thoughts and fantasies.
Autopsy - a physical examination of the corpse through dissection to determine cause of death (also necropsy and postmortem).
Bestiality - is a sexual intercourse by a human being with a lower animal.
Biopsy - a small piece of tissue excised for the purpose of analysis.
Bite mark - a circular or oval patterned injury consisting of two opposing symmetrical.U-shaped arches separated at their bases by open spaces.Following the periphery of the arches are a series of individual abrasions, contusions, or lacerations reflecting the size, shape, arrangement, and distribution of the class characteristics of the contacting surfaces of the human dentition.
Bloat - the transient phase in corpse decomposition that follows the fresh phase and is characterized by excessive swelling, produced by gases trapped internally.
Blood group - an immunologically distinct, genetically determined class of human erythrocyte antigens, identified as A, B, AB, and O.A classification of red blood cell surface antigens, ABO is the best known of the blood group systems.
Blood type - a way of saying which blood group antigens are present on the persons red cells.
Bloodborne pathogen - infectious, disease causing microorganism that maybe found or transported in biological fluids.
Bloodstain - liquid blood that has dried once it has come in contact with a surface.
Body bag - a heavy waterproof bag usually closed with a zipper and used to transport a corpse.
Body dump site - the location where an offender disposes of the murder victim's body.
Bondage - the combining of sadism and masochism.
Bronchi - (singular-bronchus) large divisions of the trachea that convey air to and from the lungs.
Bronchiole - a small diameter airway branching from a bronchus.
Bronchitis - inflammation of the mucus membrane of the bronchial tubes, usually associated with a persistent cough and sputum production.
Bronchospasm - contraction of the smooth muscle of the bronchi causing the narrowing of the bronchi.This narrowing increases the resistance or airflow into the lungs and may cause a shortness of breath typically associated with wheezing.
Buccal coitus - (coitus per os or sin of Gomorrah) the male organ is introduced into mouth, usually of a young child.
Cadaver dog - canines specially trained to find human decomposition scent and and alert their handlers to its location.
Cadaverine - malodorous chemical compound produced during decomposition.
Cause of death - an injury or disease that ultimately lead to death of the individual, generally determined by medical examiner or coroner (pathologists).
Carrion - decaying animal flesh.
Cephalothorax - the anterior body region in some arthropods consisting of the fused head and thorax.
Cerebellum - the large brain mass located at the posterior base of the brain, responsible for balance and coordination of movement.
Cerebral contusion - bruising of brain tissue marked by swelling and hemorrhage and resulting in loss of consciousness.
Cerebral edema - swelling of the brain caused by excessive buildup of fluid in the tissue.
Cerebral infarctions - is an ischemic stroke resulting from a disturbance in the blood vessels supplying blood to the brain.
Cerebrum - the largest portion of the brain, include the cerebral hemispheres (cerebral cortex and basal ganglia)
Chronic - persistent, prolonged, repeated.
Cirrhosis - a chronic disease of the liver marked by degeneration of cells, inflammation, and fibrous thickening of the tissue, can be cause =d by long term alcoholism, viral infections, and metabolic disease.
Clitoris - erectile tissue in female analogous to male penis, located above the urethra and covered by the clitoral hood.
Clot - a thick mass of coagulated liquid, ex. blood.A blood clot is formed by a complex mechanism involving plasma protein, fibrinogens, platelets, and other clotting factors.
Coagulation - the process of stopping blood flow from a wound or by which blood forms clot.
Coagulophaty - a disease affecting the blood clotting process.
Code of Hammurabi - is the oldest known medico legal code.
Coma - state of profound unconsciousness from which the patient can not be aroused.
Concussion - sudden shock to or jarring of the brain which may or may not cause a loss of consciousness.
Conjunctiva - the delicate mucous membrane that covers the exposed surface of the eyeball and lines of the eyelids.
Contact wound - a wound that results when a small weapon is fired in contact with the skin.May divided into tight or loose contact wounds based on the amount of pressure used against the skin.
Contusion - a bruise that is either superficial or internal.An injury cause by blunt object impact without laceration with surface discoloration due to subsurface hemorrhaging.An injury to subsurface tissue caused by a blow from a blunt instrument that does not break the skin.
Convulsion - is a medical condition where the body muscle contract and relax rapidly and repeatedly, resulting in an uncontrolled shaking of the body.
Cornea - the transparent membrane that cover the colored part of the eye.
Coronary artery - an artery supplying blood to the heart.
Coroner - (medical examiner) (pathologists) an officer responsible for determining the manner and cause of death.
Corpse - a dead human body, also called cadaver.
Cunnilingus - is the oral stimulation of the female genitalia.
Death - the loss of life characterized by clinically by combined failure of respiratory, cardiovascular, and nervous system activity.
Decomposition - post mortem degenerative rotting of the corpse.Chemical breakdown, separating compounds into their component parts, includes breakdown pf proteins by putrefaction, of carbohydrates by fermentation, and of fats by rancidification.
Decubitus - may be seen as a bedsore that can produce an ulcer in the body caused by lying long in one position, this pressure necrosis can be found on elderly patients.
Defense wounds - stab or incised wounds to the hands, wrists, forearms, and arms that may contain embedded fragments of the weapon.
Delirium - extreme mental excitement marked by defective perception, impaired memory, and rapid succession of confused and unconnected ideas, often with illusions and hallucinations.
Delusion - firm belief opposed to reality but maintained in spite of srong evidence to the contrary.
Diatoms - are microscopic, unicellular, silica coated algae.Presence of diatoms in tissue is a sign of ante-Morten drowning.Diatoms are examined by acid digestion technique.
Dipsomania - an irresistible desire for alcoholic drinks at periodic intervals.
Durham rule - an accused person is nor criminally responsible if his unlawful act is the product of mental disease or mental defect.
Ecchymosis - is the medical term for a subcutaneous purpura larger than 1 centimeter or a hematoma, commonly called a bruise.
Eclampsia - an acute disorder of pregnant and puerperal women, associated with convulsions and coma.
Embolism - obstruction of a blood vessel by foreign substances or by a blood clot.
Endemic - a disease that occurs continuously in a particular population but has a low mortality rate such as measles.
Endocarditis - inflammation of the lining membrane of the heart.Maybe due to invasion of microorganisms or an abnormal immunologic reaction.
Epidural hemorrhage - bleeding in the space between the dura matter and skull or wall of the vertebral canal around the spinal cord.
Epistaxis - hemorrhage from the nose, nosebleed.
Erythrocytes - red blood cells.A type of blood cell that contain a nucleus in all vertebrates but man and that has hemoglobin in the cytoplasm.
Erythroderma - intense, widespread reddening of the skin.
Esophagus - the portion of the digestive canal extending from the throat to the stomach, also referred to as gullet.
Eunuchs - male prostitutes.
Euthanasia - (mercy killing) it means producing painless death of a person suffering from hopelessly incurable and painful disease.
Exoskeleton - a skeleton on the outside of the body whose inner walls serves as a point for the attachment of muscles.
Feces - animal solid waste material discharged from the rectum through the anus.End product of digestion after absorption of nutrients and re-absorption of water.
Felacio - is the oral stimulation or manipulation of the penis either by the female or male.
Fetichism - sexual satisfaction by contact with articles of opposite sex.
Forensic medicine - is the application of medical knowledge in the administration of law and justice.
Forensic taphonomy - the study of post-mortem processes affecting human remains for the purposes of interpreting forensic data.
Fortunato Fedele - an Italian physician who in 1602 published the first book on forensic medicine.
Frigidity - is the inability to start or to maintain the sexual arousal pattern in the female.
Frotteurism - contact with other persons to obtain sexual gratification.
Gangrene - death of tissue due to lack of blood supply.
Gastritis - inflammation of the stomach, characterized by epigastric pain or tenderness, nausea, vomiting, and systemic electrolyte changes if vomiting persists.
Glaucoma - a disease of the eye characterized by abnormal and damaging high pressure in the eye, usually due to a blockage of the channel that normally allows the outflow of fluid from the eye.
Hematology - branch of biology that deals with blood and blood forming organs.
Hematoma - accumulation of blood in the tissue due to internal hemorrhaging.A tumor of blood caused by leakage from damage blood vessels, it contains enough blood to form a blood-filled space.
Hemolysis - destruction or dissolution of red blood cells in such a manner that hemoglobin is liberated into the medium in which the cells are suspended.
Hemolytic anemia - Any anemia resulting from destruction of red blood cells.
Hemophilia A hereditary blood disease characterized by impaired coagulability of the blood and a strong tendency to bleed.
Hemoptysis - Coughing and spitting of blood as a result of bleeding from any part of the respiratory tract.
Hemorrhage - Escape of whole blood from a blood vessel. Abnormal internal or external bleeding. May be venous, arterial, or capillary from blood vessels into the tissues, or into or from the body.
Herniation - Rupture of tissue into an adjacent space due to internal pressure or swelling.
Hijrahs - castrated eunuchs.
Homosexuality - means persistent emotional and physical attraction to members of same sex.
Hymen - Thin membrane, in females, that separates the external genitalia from the vagina. The outer surface is a dry, squamous epithelium, and the inner surface is a moist mucous membrane.
Hypothermia - Having a body temperature below normal.
Hypovolemia - Diminished blood volume.
Hypoxia - Condition in which below-normal levels of oxygen are present in the air, blood, or body tissues, short of anoxia.
Impetigo - Highly contagious, rapidly spreading skin disorder caused by staphylococcus or streptococcus and characterized by red blisters. Impetigo sometimes occurs as a result of poor hygiene.
Inbreeding - Reproduction between related individuals.
Incised wound - Injury produced by a sharp instrument and characterized by lack of surface abrasion and absence of bridging vessels, nerves, and smooth margins.
Incision - A wound produced by a sharp-edged instrument or object.
Ischemia - Obstruction of blood flow (usually by arterial narrowing) that causes lack of oxygen and other bloodborne nutrients.
Ischemia necrosis - Death of cells as a result of decreased blood flow to affected tissues.
Invertebrate - Any species of animal lacking a back bone.
Impotence - is the inability of a person to perform sexual intercourse.
Jaundice - yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes due to an accumulation of bile pigments (e.g., bilirubin) in the circulating blood. Another cause is liver damage caused by hepatitis.
Kleptomania - an irresistible desire to steal articles of little value.
Labia majora - Outer lips to the vagina that are covered by pubic hair after menarche (onset of menstruation).
Laceration - A wound produced by a tear in the skin due to application of blunt force in crushing or shearing.
Livor mortis - A coloration of the skin of the lower parts of a corpse caused by the settling of the red blood cells as the blood ceases to circulate.
Lymphocyte - A general class of white blood cells that are important components of the immune system of vertebrate animals.
Maggot - The larva of a higher fly. It sheds its skin twice and has three growth instars prior to pupariation. A legless larva without a well-developed head capsule.
Mandible - A mouth organ of invertebrates (especially in the arthropods and insects) used for seizing, biting, and manipulating food. With vertebrate organisms, it is recognized as the lower jaw.
Manner of death - A typology of deaths according to whether they are due to homicide, suicide, accident, or natural causes. Death occurs in one of four manners: natural, if caused solely by disease; accidental, if it occurs without apparent intent; suicidal, if caused by the deceased; and homicidal, if someone other than the deceased caused it.
Malingering - (shamming) means conscious, planned feigning or pretending a disease for the
Masochism - opposite of sadism, derived from the name of Leopold Von Sacher-Masoch, an Austrian novelist, being whipped by his wife used to be a stimulant for his literary work.
Medical jurisprudence - deals with the legal rights, privileges, duties and obligations of medical practitioner.
Meningitis - Brain infection involving an acute inflammation of the membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord, characterized by drowsiness, confusion, irritability, and sensory impairments.
Mite - Any arthropod in the order Acari. These are very small to minute animals having four pairs of legs in the adult stage, but only three pairs in the larva. All mites have chelicerated mouth parts and lack mandibles.
Mummification - The drying, shrinking, and hardening of dead flesh due to extreme dehydration.
Mutilomania - an irresistible desire to mutilate animals.
Myiasis - The invasion of any living vertebrate animal, including people, by fly larvae, especially maggots. The description may be further refined to indicate location affected (e.g., nasal myiasis, rectal myiasis) or the predisposing cause (e.g., traumatic myiasis in a suppurating wound). Myiasis may be classified as either primary or secondary (facultative).
Myocardial ischemia - Insufficient oxygen supplies to meet the metabolic demands of heart muscles.
Myocarditis - Inflammation of the muscles of the heart.
Myoclonus - Involuntary spasm or twitching of a muscle or group of muscles.
Myoglobin - The oxygen-transporting, pigmented protein of muscle resembles blood hemoglobin in function.
Myotomy - Cutting of muscle; in forensic odontology, cutting facial muscles to release postmortem rigor mortis.
Necrophagia - necros - corpse, phagia - to eat.
Necrophilia - sexual intercourse with dead body.
Necrophilous - Having a dietary fondness for dead flesh.
Necrosis - Death of one or more cells or a portion of a tissue or organ.
Neoplasm - A new and abnormal formation of tissue such as a tumor or growth.
Neuropathy - A disorder of the nervous system; in contemporary usage, a disease involving the cranial or spinal nerves.
Neuroses - the patient suffer from emotional or intellectual disorder but does not loss touch with reality.
Osteoarthritis - deterioration in joint integrity connected with use-wear exacerbated by inflammation and related to reduction in bone density.
Osteomyelitis - Inflammation of the bone especially the marrow caused by a pathogenic organism.
Osteoporosis - Increased porosity of the bone, seen most often in the elderly.
Paedophile - (pedophile) is an adult who repeatedly engages in sexual activities with children below the age of puberty.
Paraphilias - abnormal and unorthodox sex play using unusual objects or parts of the body.
Perimortem - At or near the time of death.
Petechiae - Pinhead-sized (red) dots which are minute hemorrhages found inside the eyelids and the facial skin; considered by pathologists to be a sign of strangulation.
Phobia - it is an excessive or irrational fear of a particular object or situation.
Plasma - The liquid portion of whole blood containing water, electrolytes, glucose, fats, proteins, and gases. Contains all the clotting factors necessary for coagulation but in an inactive form. Once coagulation occurs, the fluid is converted to serum.
Pneumonitis - Inflammation of the lungs.
Postmortem - After death, occurring after death, or pertaining to a postmortem examination, an autopsy.
Postmortem - artifact Alteration to the body that occurs after death that is not related to antemortem injury.
Postmortem interval - The period of time between death and corpse discovery.
Priapism - painful penile erection in absence of sexual desire.
Pseudo-malingering - A phenomenon whereby a mentally ill individual feigns the mental illness he or she actually has. The behavior is considered a temporary ego-supportive device that allows the individual to feel he or she has control over the illness.
Psychological autopsy - An attempt to determine the mode of death (whether an accident, suicide, homicide, or natural causes) by an examination of what was known about the deceased.
Psychopath - a person who is neither insane nor mentally defective but fails to conform to normal standards of behavior.
Psychoses - they are characterized by withdrawal from reality, living in a world of fantasy.
Pulmonary edema - Accumulation of extra vascular fluid in the lungs that impairs gas exchange; usually due to either increased intravascular pressure or increased permeability of the pulmonary capillaries.
Putrifaction - The foul-smelling, anaerobic decomposition of moist or wet organic matter by microorganisms. The breakdown of tissues, particularly proteins, due to enzyme action.
Pyromania - sexual stimulation while seeing flames or destruction of buildings.
Rigor mortis - The stiffness of the body after death that helps in reconstructing the time at which death occurred. The progressive rigidity of a corpse following death, caused by an accumulation of lactic acid in dying muscle tissues. This is a temporary condition lasting 12 to 36 h.
Sadism - sexual gratification is obtained or increased from acts of physical cruelty or causing of pain upon one's partner.The term is derived from the name of a French nobleman Marquis de Sade, infamous for his crimes and writings.Many of his stories were about sexuality, cruelty, and torture.
Saponification - The conversion of corpse body fat into a curdlike foul-smelling product called adipocere
Saprophagous - Feeding on dead or decaying plant or animal material, such as carrion, corpses, dung, or rotting wood.
Satyriasis - incessant sexual desire.
Scoliosis - A lateral curvature of the spine.
Scurvy - A deficiency disease characterized by hemorrhagic manifestations and abnormal formation of bones and teeth.
Sepsis - Pathologic state, usually febrile, resulting from the presence of microorganisms or their poisonous products in the bloodstream.
Septicemia - Bacteria in the blood system with signs and symptoms of disease.
Sexual oralism - it is the obtaining of sexual pleasure from the application of the mouth to the sexual organs.
Sodomy - is anal intercourse between two males or between a male and female.It is also called buggery.It is also called gerontophilia when the active agent is an adult and paederasty, wen the passive agent is a young boy who is known as catamite.
Tachycardia - Rapid heartbeat (typically greater than 100 beats per minute).
Tachypnea - Rapid breathing.
Tattooing - A characteristic pattern in the skin caused by particles of
unburned and partially burned powder from a shotgun blast at very close range.Also may be called stippling.
Tetany - Condition marked by involuntary muscle contractions or spasms.
Trauma - An injury that is the result of any force such as blunt, sharp, or penetrating.
Transvestism - trans - opposite, vesta - clothing of eonism.The term is derived from the name of Chevelier d'Eon Beamont, a Frenchman.It is usually found in the males who derived sexual pleasure by wearing female dress.
Tribadism - female homosexuality.Sexual gratification of a woman is obtained by another woman by simple lip kissing,generalized body contact, deep kissing, manual manipulation of breast and genitalia, genital apposition, friction of external genital organs, etc.In some case, artificial penis or phallus may be used.
Throttling - is manual strangulation.
Undinism - sexual pleasure by witnessing the act of urination.
_Vasodilation - Increased diameter of the blood vessels.
Voyeurism - (scoptophilia) peeping tom, sexual enjoyment by watching.
Wheezing - Breathing noisily and with difficulty; usually a sign of spasm or narrowing of the airways._
Zenana - eunuch with intact genitalia.