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Dental Identification of a Mummified Body using Dental Cast and Prosthesis

Journal: Journal of Forensic Investigation (Vol.3, No. 2)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ; ; ; ;

Page : 01-03

Keywords : Forensic odontology; Dental records; Dental models; Forensic anthropology; Dental prosthesis;

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Forensic dentistry can significantly contribute to the identification of victims especially in cases of charred, decomposing, mutilated or skeletonized bodies. However, in order to make this procedure technically feasible it is necessary to find dental records produced before death. This study aims to report a case of a mummified body identified through dental traits found within a plaster cast, discussing the legal aspects contained in this procedure. A partially skeletonized body in advanced stage of decomposition, with mummified soft tissue was found. The dental autopsy revealed the presence of teeth with amalgam and composite fillings, and teeth missing ante-mortem (AM) and post-mortem (PM). Specifically, the teeth #16, #17, #26 and #27 showed the presence of cavities compatible with niches for removable dental prosthesis. The relatives of the alleged victim provided the AM data, consisting of registers of clinical exam and an upper dental prosthesis embedded in a plaster cast. The outcomes from the AM/PM dental comparison revealed 15 converging points, 8 similarities, and 7 explainable discrepancies. In addition, the dental prosthesis provided within the plaster cast fit perfectly in the upper dental arch of the corpse, showing that the plaster dentition was casted from the victim. Therefore, it was possible to positively correlate the unidentified body with the potential missing person. The use of dental casts represents a useful tool in forensic odontology considering that these evidences allow a three-dimensional evaluation of the dental arches, revealing unique information for human identifications.

Last modified: 2016-12-12 15:33:11