A post-mortem examination will be carried out ifit's been requested by:
The two different types of post-mortem are discussed below.
A coroner is a judicial officer responsible for investigating deaths in certain situations (see below). Coroners are usually lawyers or doctors with a minimum of five years' experience.
In most cases, a doctor or the police refer a death to the coroner.A death will be referred to the coroner if:
The mainaim of a post-mortem requested by a coroner is to find out how someone died and decide whether an inquest is needed. An inquest is a legal investigation into the circumstances surrounding a person's death.
If someone related to you has died and their death has been referred to a coroner, you won't be asked to give consent (permission) for a post-mortem to take place. This is because the coroner is required by law to carry out a post-mortem when a death is suspicious, sudden or unnatural.
A coroner may decide to hold an inquest after a post-mortem has been completed. Samples of organs and tissues may need to be retained until after the inquest has finished.
If the death occurred in suspicious circumstances, samples may also need to be kept by the police, as evidence, for a longer period. In some cases, samples may need to be kept for a number of months or even years.
The coroner's office will discuss the situation with you if, following an inquest, tissue samples need to be retained for a certain length of time.
Post-mortems are sometimes requested by hospital doctors to provide more information about an illness orthe cause of death, or to further medical research.
Sometimes, the partner or relative of the deceased person will request a hospital post-mortem to find out more about the cause of death.
Hospital post-mortems can only be carried out with consent. Sometimes, a person may have given their consent before they died. If this isn't the case, a person who is close to the deceased can give their consent fora post-mortem to take place.
Hospital post-mortems may belimited to particular areas of the body, such as the head, chest or abdomen. When you're asked to give your consent, this will be discussed with you. During the post-mortem, only the organs or tissue that you've agreed to can be removed for examination.
The HTArecommends that you should be given at least 24 hours to consider your decision about the post-mortem examination. You should also be given the details of someone to contact in case you change your mind.
A post-mortem, also known as an autopsy, is the examination of a body after death. The aim of a post-mortem is to determine the cause of death.
A post-mortem examination will be carried out ifit's been requested by: a coroner because the cause of death is unknown, or following a sudden, violent or unexpected death a hospital doctor to find
A post-mortem will be carried out as soon as possible, usually within two to three working days of a person's death. In some cases, it may be possible for it to take place within 24 hours. Depending u
Afterapost-mortem, the pathologist writes a report of the findings. If the post-mortem was requested by the coroner,the coroner or coroner's officer willlet you know the cause of death determined by