Postmortem volume change of the spleen and kidney on early postmortem computed tomography: comparison with antemortem computed tomography.


Department of Radiological Technology, Graduate School of Health Sciences, Niigata University, 2-746 Asahimachi-dori, Chuoku, Niigata, Niigata, 951-8518, Japan. [Email]


OBJECTIVE : To clarify an early postmortem change, we investigated the volume changes of the spleen and kidney on postmortem CT compared with antemortem CT in the same patients.
METHODS : We retrospectively evaluated the volumes of 56 spleens (56 cases) and 50 kidneys (25 cases) using antemortem and postmortem CT, which were performed within 168 min after death. We divided the cases of spleen analysis into a hemorrhagic group (n = 12) and a non-hemorrhagic group (n = 44).
RESULTS : The volumes of the organs before and after death were 101.0 ± 70.9 (cm3, mean ± standard deviation) and 81.1 ± 57.8 in spleens, 120.3 ± 49.2 and 109.2 ± 39.2 in kidneys, respectively. Both spleens and kidneys shrank after death (p < 0.05). The volumes of spleens before and after death were 111 ± 66.5 and 67.5 ± 27.7 in the hemorrhagic group, and 98.2 ± 72.5 and 84.9 ± 63.3 in the non-hemorrhagic group, respectively. The median value of the ratio of postmortem splenic volume to antemortem volume in the hemorrhagic group (65.0%) was smaller than the one in the non-hemorrhagic group (90.5%) (p < 0.05).
CONCLUSIONS : We demonstrated that spleens and kidneys significantly reduced in size after death. The rate of shrinkage of spleens in the hemorrhagic group significantly became larger than the one in the non-hemorrhagic group.


Kidney,Postmortem changes,Postmortem computed tomography,Spleen,