Medico-legal considerations for Morel-Lavallée lesions
- 25 Downloads
The Morel-Lavallée lesion is an infrequent traumatic lesion that the forensic physician may need to evaluate during examination of a victim. Using a review of the literature and an illustrative case, the objective of this paper is to discuss the medico-legal issues (accountability, functional recovery and healing times, and aftermath) associated with Morel-Lavallée lesions. We describe the case of a 24-year-old motorcycle driver who was hit by a car. Clinically, the right lumbar region had a large 16 × 15 cm ecchymosis with subcutaneous fluid swelling found by palpation. A body scan revealed a Morel-Lavallée lesion among other lesions. On day 7, its thickness was decreased by half. Morel-Lavallée lesions are specifically induced by shearing force with moderate-to-high kinetics in an anatomical area with an underlying fascia. The associated functional disability is globally moderate, but a large lesion or recurrences can extend the time needed to recover. Apart from some exceptions, care without any delay in diagnosis and treatment allows evolution of the lesion without functional consequences, but these lesions are frequently unnoticed in the initial phase.
KeywordsMorel-Lavallée Forensic medicine Subcutaneous tissue lesion Accidents
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Approval by Ethical Committee is not required for case reports as single case descriptions do not fulfil the criteria of research as defined by the Human Research Act. Patient information has been withheld to protect patient anonymity.
- 2.Muneer M, El-Menyar A, Abdelrahman H, Murad MA, Al Harami SM, Mokhtar A, et al. Clinical presentation and management of pelvic Morel–Lavallee injury in obese patients. J Emerg Trauma Shock. 2019;12:40–7.Google Scholar
- 4.Morel-Lavallée VAF. Épanchements traumatiques de sérosité. Arch Générales Médecine Paris. 1853.Google Scholar
- 15.Anciaux P, Béjui J, Buu-Hoï P, Cantaloube D, Chikhani L, Chodkiewicz JP, et al. Barème indicatif d’évaluation des taux d’incapacité en droit commun. Le concours médical; 2001. http://www.expertisemedicale.be/upload/documents/documentation/Bareme_indicatif_d_evaluation.pdf. Accessed 24 June 2019.