International Journal of Legal Medicine

, Volume 133, Issue 2, pp 565–569 | Cite as

Terrorist explosive belt attacks: specific patterns of bone traumas

  • Yann DelannoyEmail author
  • Tania Delabarde
  • Isabelle Plu
  • Laurence Legrand
  • Marc Taccoen
  • Antoine Tracqui
  • Bertrand Ludes
Case Report


In cases of terrorist bomb attacks, the issue of victim identification is the principal aim. For investigators and justice, terrorists must also be identified in a timely manner. The fragmentation of bodies caused by explosive devices however makes this operation difficult. The cases presented correspond to six autopsies of perpetrators carrying explosives. Their explosive belts produced different body sections on areas correlated with the location on the body of carrying explosive charges. Indeed, cross-sectional areas are the signature of the level of explosive devices on the body, and some fracture features through the damage of certain areas of constitutional weaknesses are specific elements to consider. These elements can allow a quick distinction between victims and terrorists, in order to assist in the medico-legal process of identification.


Forensic medicine  Anthropology  Blast injuries  Bone traumas  Suicide bombing 



We would like to express our sincere appreciation to Céline Deguette, Charlotte Gorgiard, Isabelle Sec, and Lilia Hamza.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yann Delannoy
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Tania Delabarde
    • 1
    • 3
  • Isabelle Plu
    • 1
    • 4
  • Laurence Legrand
    • 5
    • 3
  • Marc Taccoen
    • 1
  • Antoine Tracqui
    • 6
  • Bertrand Ludes
    • 1
    • 3
    • 7
  1. 1.Institut Médico LégalParisFrance
  2. 2.Chu de LilleLilleFrance
  3. 3.Université Paris Descartes Sorbonne CitéParisFrance
  4. 4.Sorbonne UniversitéParisFrance
  5. 5.Department of Radiology, INSERM U894Centre Hospitalier Sainte-AnneParisFrance
  6. 6.Service de médecine légaleCHRU Besançon -Hôpital Saint-JacquesBesançonFrance
  7. 7.Toulouse UniversityToulouseFrance

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