This report describes an autopsy case of a rare longitudinal brainstem laceration associated with complex basilar skull fractures. The victim was a 40-year-old male who died immediately after falling from a roof (9.2m in height) of a factory onto a concrete floor. The postmortem examination revealed an incomplete ring fracture of the base of the skull with longitudinal fractures of the sphenoid (clivus of the dorsum sellae turcicae) and occipital bones, cerebral contusions in the frontal and temporal poles, a longitudinal brainstem laceration at the posterior median sulcus of the pons accompanied with multiple contusional hemorrhages in the brainstem and corpus callosum. Related blunt-force injuries were observed in the parieto-occipital region of the head, shoulder and upper back involving the fractures of the cervical and thoracic vertebrae, and sternum and ribs, indicating a huge impact to the occiput and subsequent impression of the vertebral column into the base of the skull due to violent anteroflexion of the neck, which caused the complex basilar skull fractures, contusions and longitudinal laceration of the brainstem.
- Brainstem injury
- Forensic pathology
- Ring fracture of the base of the skull
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine