01.11.2013 | Technical Note | Ausgabe 6/2013
The application of cone-beam CT in the aging of bone calluses: a new perspective?
International Journal of Legal Medicine
- A. Cappella, A. Amadasi, D. Gaudio, D. Gibelli, S. Borgonovo, M. Di Giancamillo, C. Cattaneo
In the forensic and anthropological fields, the assessment of the age of a bone callus can be crucial for a correct analysis of injuries in the skeleton. To our knowledge, the studies which have focused on this topic are mainly clinical and still leave much to be desired for forensic purposes, particularly in looking for better methods for aging calluses in view of criminalistic applications. This study aims at evaluating the aid cone-beam CT can give in the investigation of the inner structure of fractures and calluses, thus acquiring a better knowledge of the process of bone remodeling. A total of 13 fractures (three without callus formation and ten with visible callus) of known age from cadavers were subjected to radiological investigations with digital radiography (DR) (conventional radiography) and cone-beam CT with the major aim of investigating the differences between DR and tomographic images when studying the inner and outer structures of bone healing. Results showed how with cone-beam CT the structure of the callus is clearly visible with higher specificity and definition and much more information on mineralization in different sections and planes. These results could lay the foundation for new perspectives on bone callus evaluation and aging with cone-beam CT, a user-friendly and skillful technique which in some instances can also be used extensively on the living (e.g., in cases of child abuse) with reduced exposition to radiation.