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Indian Journal of Forensic and Community Medicine


Autopsy Based Study on Injury Pattern and Socio Demographic Profile in Victims of Fall from height into Water


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Author Details: S R Saritha, K. Sasikala

Volume : 2

Issue : 3

Online ISSN : 2394-6776

Print ISSN : 2394-6768

Article First Page : 125

Article End Page : 129


Abstract

Back ground and objectives: Fall from height in to water with mention of injuries, were included in the international classification of diseases (ICD) as fall from height. Severity of the injuries depends on various biological and circumstantial factors. This study was taken up with the objective to describe the pattern of injuries and socio- demographic profile of victims of fall from height into water with mention of injuries.

Method: Descriptive autopsy based study on 53 cases of fall from height into water with any mention of injuries conducted at State Medico legal Institute, Medical College, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala during the period from May 2006 to April 2008.
Results and interpretation: Majority of victims were males (69.8%). Age ranged from one year one month old female child to 90 years old elderly female. Incidence was maximum in lower and lower middle income group (88.7%). Place of incidence was home in 66% of cases. Accidental death constituted 50.9%. Majority died due to fall into well (88.7%). Significant number of victims fell down from a height range of 5 to 10 meters (39.6%). Drowning was the foremost cause of death irrespective of height of fall (58.5%). External injuries were invariably present in all cases and internal injuries in 41.5%. Most frequent region involved was head in 33.9% cases. Injury severity was not proportional to the height of fall.
Conclusion: Falls are extremely common, the severity not necessarily being directly related to the distance that the person falls. Along with other factors, surface of impact also plays a major role in determining the severity of injuries in cases of fall from height.
 
Key words: Fall from height into water, Injury pattern, Surface of impact, Autopsy study.