Kantonsspital St.Gallen

Spectrometric evaluation of post-mortem optical skin changes

Vera Sterzik, Lioudmila Belenkaia, Andreas W Liehr & Michael Bohnert

abstract As to their optical properties, the components of human skin can be divided into two different categories: the light-scattering components shown as peaks and those absorbing light appearing as dips in the reflectance spectrum. As the post-mortem interval progresses, the concentration of scatterers and absorbers and thus the reflectance spectra change due to post-mortem tissue breakdown and degradation. Based on a total number of 532 reflectance spectrometric measurements in 195 deceased, a characteristic change in the reflectance spectra could be documented in the post-mortem course. Subsequently, an algorithm to calculate the post-mortem interval was developed by analysing the reflectance spectrometric extrema.
citation Sterzik V, Belenkaia L, Liehr A W, Bohnert M. Spectrometric evaluation of post-mortem optical skin changes. Int J Legal Med 2013; 128:361-7.
type journal paper/review (English)
date of publishing 19-04-2013
journal title Int J Legal Med (128/2)
ISSN electronic 1437-1596
pages 361-7
PubMed 23604392
DOI 10.1007/s00414-013-0855-2