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March 1910


Author Affiliations


From the Pathological Laboratory of the Yale Medical School.

Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1910;V(3):217-231. doi:10.1001/archinte.1910.00050250002001

In the medicolegal study of cases of violent death the location and gross appearance of blood-stains at times become important factors. Their significance is, however, referred to but very briefly in works on medical jurisprudence, and the part which blood-drops falling vertically may play in solving the riddles which these cases present has been hardly noticed. A search through the available English, German and French works on the subject shows practically nothing regarding these latter blood-spots.

Witthaus and Becker's last edition1 says: ``Blood dropped perpendicularly on a hard smooth surface begins to spatter when the height reaches 3 or 4 inches, but may not spatter from a height of 2 or 3 feet. Dropped from a few inches on glass, the drop is compact with smooth edge; from a few feet, the drop is flatter, the edges may be moderately indented, and minute outlying drops may be present.''

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