Biomechanical Forensics in Pediatric Head Trauma

  • Brittany Coats
  • Susan Margulies
Reference work entry


Biomechanics is an essential partner with forensic medicine in the estimation of head trauma etiology. Biomechanics is used in forensic investigations typically to estimate the forces applied to the body and the resulting deformations of hard and soft tissues. By integrating animal, tissue, and cellular responses with tissue stiffness measurements, tolerable load limits can be established, and computational biomechanical models are used to simulate real-world events and estimate how and why injuries might occur. Concepts of biomechanics are reviewed, and summaries of current knowledge regarding the biomechanical injury mechanism of pediatric brain, skull, cerebral vasculature, and retina are presented. Strengths and weaknesses of animal experiments and computational models are discussed, and key recommendations for future studies articulated.


Accidental fall Brain injury Inflicted trauma Retinal hemorrhage Shaking Skull fracture 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of UtahSalt Lake CityUSA
  2. 2.BioengineeringUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Andrew McIntosh
    • 1
  1. 1.CremorneAustralia

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