Histopathological Examination of Skin in Electrocution Deaths: One Year Autopsy Study

Rekha Narendra Patil, Jayashree Tijare, Waman Raut, Head
Indian Journal of Forensic and Community Medicine   unpublished
Electrical injuries are essentially accidental. There is significant morbidity and mortality associated with electric injury. Simple safety measures can prevent accidental electrical injuries. This is an observational retrospective study done in the department of Pathology. This was a one year study. The study year being 2016. Our aim was to study the histomorphology of the skin in electrocution deaths. The maximum cases of electrocution deaths were due to low voltage (220-240V). This is the
more » ... 0V). This is the voltage supply for the domestic and minor industries. The unique finding of the study was three accidental electrocution deaths by touching the electric farm fence, which are constructed to prevent the entry of wild animals which destroy the crops in the field. Skin is the most frequently involved tissue in electrocution. We studied skin samples from 29 cases of electrocution deaths. All 29 were accidental deaths. There were 76% males. Upper extremity was the chief area of wounding. The skin samples received showed denudation in 76% cases. The most common histopathological findings were nuclear streaming (96%), dermoepidermal separation (96%) and coagulative necrosis (89%). Electrocution deaths is one of the important cause of negative autopsy. The histopathological examination of the skin coupled with the circumstantial evidence, proper and complete inspection of the crime site can be very helpful to the forensic surgeon in arriving at the diagnosis of electrocution deaths.