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A Comparison of Dental Chartings Performed at the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command Central Identification Laboratory and the Kokura Central Identification Unit on Remains Identified from the Korean War

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During the Korean War, the Office of the Quartermaster General's Graves Registration Service (GRS) was responsible for the recovery, processing, identification, and repatriation of US remains. In January 1951, the GRS established a Central Identification Unit (CIU) at Kokura, Japan. At the Kokura CIU, postmortem dental examinations were performed by the dental technicians. Thirty‐nine postmortem dental examinations performed at the CIU were compared to the findings documented in the Forensic Odontology Reports written at the JPAC Central Identification Laboratory (CIL). Differences were noted in 20 comparisons (51%). The majority of the discrepancies was considered negligible and would not alter the JPAC decision to disinter a set of unknown remains. Charting discrepancies that were considered significant included the occasional failure of the Kokura technicians to identify teeth with inter‐proximal or esthetic restorations and the misidentification of a mechanically prepared tooth (i.e., tooth prepared for a restoration) as a carious surface.
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Keywords: Central Identification Laboratory (CIL); Centralized Accounting Recovery and Identification System (CARIS); Graves Registration Service (AGRS); Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC); Kokura Central Identification Unit (CIU); forensic science; odontology

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2016

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