Postmortem angiography revealing traumatic rupture of the intracranial internal carotid artery
Diagnosis of traumatic subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH), although relatively rare, is important in forensic medicine. It is mostly associated with rupture of the vertebrobasilar artery. Traumatic aneurysm of the intracranial part of the internal carotid artery (ICA) is also rare but has been reported in several studies. It is thought that the intracranial ICA is injured by blunt force to the head, neck, and chest. However, traumatic SAH with fatal acute course resulting from rupture of the ICA is especially uncommon: only two fatal cases without an associated aneurysm have been reported in the English-language literature. Although detecting the arterial lesion is required to make a precise diagnosis, this is sometimes impossible by macroscopic examination at autopsy or by investigation after formalin-fixation according to the position of the lesion. We report a rare case of fatal traumatic SAH associated with intracranial ICA rupture. Postmortem computed tomography angiography was useful to confirm the lesion.
KeywordsTraumatic subarachnoid hemorrhage Internal carotid artery Postmortem angiography Forensic medicine Traumatic arterial injury
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