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Ocular Findings in Pediatric Deaths Under 2 Years of Age (1994–2004)

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Our purpose is to highlight novel ocular findings of 102 forensic pediatric cases under 2 years of age who die suddenly. Forensic information, grossing, and microscopic eye protocol was followed. The most common diagnosis was Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) (57/102). Novel cytoid bodies were present in the retina of 72/102 cases and they were located predominantly 90% (65/72) at the anterior part of the retina (p < 0.001). Of the SIDS cases, 85% (47/57) showed the presence of cytoid bodies, and among all diagnosis, SIDS was the most associated with cytoid bodies (p = 0.003). A second observation was extramedullary hematopoiesis (EMH) identified in 35/102 cases and 22 of the 57 SIDS cases. The most frequent EMH location was the choroids (29/35). This study is the first to demonstrate the presence of cytoid bodies and extramedullary hematopoiesis in the retinas of SIDS cases and children who die suddenly from other causes.
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Keywords: cytoid bodies; extramedullary hematopoiesis; forensic retinal findings; forensic science; pediatric pathology; sudden infant death syndrome

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Departments of Pathology and Molecular Medicine, Gordon V. Torrance Regional Forensic Pathology Unit, Hamilton Regional Laboratory Medicine Programme, McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, ON, Canada.

Publication date: July 1, 2008

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