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CASE REPORT
Year : 2016  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 167-170

Identifying murder victims with endodontic radiographs


1 Department of Forensic Odontology, Federal University of Goiás; Department of Legal Odontology and Forensic Anthropology, Scientific Police of Goiás, Goiás, Brazil
2 Department of Forensic Odontology, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
3 Department of Legal Odontology and Forensic Anthropology, Scientific Police of Goiás, Goiás, Brazil, India
4 Department of Forensic Odontology, School of Dentistry, Paulista University, Goiás, Brazil
5 Department of Endodontics, Federal University of Goiás, Goiânia, Goiás, Brazil

Correspondence Address:
Rhonan Ferreira Silva
Federal University of Goiás, Forensic Odontology, Praça Universitária s/n°, Setor Universitário, CEP 74605-220, Goiânia, Goiás
Brazil
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0975-1475.195112

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Endodontics is a special branch of dentistry constantly guided by imaging examinations. From a forensic scope, endodontics plays a valuable role providing solid antemortem (AM) radiographic evidence for comparison with postmortem findings in human identifications. This study illustrates the interface between endodontics and forensic odontology describing three cases of human identification based on radiographic endodontic records. From 2009 to 2012, three unknown male victims of murder were examined in a local Brazilian medico-legal institute to retrieve identity and potential cause of death. Specifically, when asked for AM data, a relative of the three victims provided periapical radiographs of endodontic treatments. Based on that, forensic dentists reproduced the same imaging acquisition techniques obtaining similar periapical radiographs, enabling a comparative dental identification. All the victims were positively identified based on patterns of dental morphology and treatment intervention. This study draws the attention of general and forensic dentists highlight the importance of properly recording dental treatments and searching for evidence in AM endodontic data, respectively.


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