Examining Asymmetries in Microfractures




Osborne, Victoria
Baker, Stephanie A.

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In forensic anthropology the study of bone trauma has historically focused on gross anatomical patters in fractures. More information may be available using CT technology to examine trauma at a microscopic scale. This research examines asymmetries in a human skull with sharp force trauma in order to estimate directionality of impact force. A skull with sharp force trauma from the Southeast Texas Applied Forensic Science Facility (STAFS) was micro CT scanned at the University of Texas CT Lab in Austin, Texas. Amira 5.6.0 imaging software was used to measure cortical thickness and microfractures were enumerated and described for each fragment. A chi-squared and one-way t-test were used to determine differences in cortical thickness and number of microfractures found in each fragment. This study is one of five other human bone trauma projects examining asymmetries in skeletal elements. The idealistic outcome of this project is to produce a more refined date set that can aide medicolegal communities in producing a more accurate prognosis or cause of trauma.


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bone trauma, CT technology, asymmetries, sharp force trauma