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Essential Forensic Medicine

Peter Vanezis

ISBN: 978-0-470-74863-3 September 2019 456 Pages


Provides an invaluable distillation of key topics in forensic medicine for undergraduate, masters, and postgraduate students

This concise, accessible, and authoritative guide covers the broad area of the forensic medical sciences, delivering core knowledge in the biomedical sciences, and the law and ethics surrounding them.

Written by a recognized authority in the field, Essential Forensic Medicine offers complete chapter coverage of the legal system, courts, and witnesses; investigation of the deceased and their lawful disposal; and the duties of a registered medical practitioner and the General Medical Council. It instructs readers on the general principles of scene examination and the medico-legal autopsy including how to interpret the many kinds of injuries one can suffer—including those from blunt impact and sharp force, firearms and explosives, asphyxia and drowning. Further chapters cover sexual offences, child abuse, and using DNA in human identification, mental health/forensic psychiatry, alcohol and drug abuse.

  • A fresh, accessible, up to date textbook on forensic medicine
  • Written by a well-known expert with 40 years of experience in the field
  • Includes numerous figures and tables, and detailed lists of key information
  • Features numerous case studies to reinforce key concepts and ideas explored within the book

Part of the ‘Essential Forensic Science’ series, Essential Forensic Medicine is a highly useful guide for advanced undergraduate students, Masters students, and new practitioners to the field.


The Editors



1. The legal system, courts and witnesses
Peter Vanezis

2. Investigation of the deceased and their lawful disposal
Peter Vanezis

3. The duties of a registered medical practitioner and the General Medical Council
Peter Vanezis

4. General principles of scene examination
Peter Vanezis

5. The medico-legal autopsy
Peter Vanezis

6.  Interpretation of injuries – general principles, classification and age estimation
Peter Vanezis

7.  Blunt impact trauma
Peter Vanezis

8. Sharp force trauma
Peter Vanezis

9. Firearms and explosion injuries
Peter Vanezis

10. Forensic aspects of Asphyxia and drowning
Peter Vanezis

11. Forensic medical aspects of human rights issues
Peter Vanezis

12. Sexual offences
Philip Beh

13. Paediatric forensic medicine
Philip Beh and Peter Vanezis

14. Sudden natural death
Peter Vanezis

15. Heat, cold and electricity
Peter Vanezis

16. Diagnosing death and changes after death
Peter Vanezis

17. Identification – general principles including anthropology, fingerprints and the investigation of mass deaths
Peter Vanezis

18. Use of DNA in human identification
Denise Syndercombe-court

19. Forensic odontology and human identification
Philip Marsden

20. Crime and mental health/forensic psychiatry
Vivek Khosla and Orlando Trujillo-bueno

21. Maternal deaths
Mahomed Dada

22. The examination of detainees and death in custody
Peter Vanezis

23. Forensic toxicology: clinic-pathological aspects and medico-legal issues
Nadia Porpiglia, Chiara Laposata and Franco Tagliaro

24. Illicit drug use
Giovanni Serpelloni and Claudia Rimondo