An exploratory study of the pattern of consent for autopsy in a regional hospital setting.
AffiliationDepartment of Surgery, Cork University Hospital, Wilton.
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CitationIr J Med Sci. 1996 Jan-Mar;165(1):7-9.
JournalIrish journal of medical science
AbstractA prospective study of the pattern of responses to requests for autopsy in a general surgical unit was performed. Information on the characteristics of the deceased, of the requestee and of the requester was documented in the case of 66 patients who died while in hospital. Permission to perform autopsy was not requested in 39 out of 66 cases and this was the most frequent contributory factor to the low rate of autopsy. Once a decision to grant or refuse autopsy is made by relatives of the deceased, the decision is unlikely to be reversed. Permission to perform autopsy was more likely to be sought when the deceased was male than when deceased was female. The relatives of patients who had recently undergone surgery were more likely to refuse permission for autopsy than were those of patients who had not had recent surgery.
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