Example of an Autopsy Report


When someone dies suddenly, such as in a traffic accident, through random violence or a drug overdose, an autopsy can be conducted to determine the exact cause of death. Generally, it's the local medical examiner or coroner who conducts the autopsy and produces a multi-page report that is used as part of the official record of death.

Report of Investigation

  • The medical examiner in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, uses a cover sheet that includes information relating to the deceased, including age, date of birth and marital status, along with information on where the deceased became ill--if pertinent--and the name of the examiner performing the autopsy. The autopsy is numbered and also given a case number for identification purposes.

Report of Laboratory Analysis

  • The lab analysis tests the blood and urine of the deceased for signs of alcohol, drugs, illnesses and infections. If drugs are found, the exact drug is identified and can be listed as either a cause or contributing cause of death.

Front and Back Drawings

  • Drawings of a human front (anterior) and back (posterior) are made, on which the examiner notes specific markings on a body, such as cuts, bruising, bullet holes, knife wounds and even breast implants

Internal Exam

  • The internal exam is the actual written autopsy report and provides information on the actual findings, including examinations of oral and neck organs, lungs, pancreas, reproductive organs, skeletal and G.I. tract (throat, nose, etc). The language is technical and may follow a format such as "Reproductive Organs: Bilateral adnexae, uterus, cervix and vagina are all intact and grossly within normal limits."

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