| June 28, 2006
One reason is that there is little desire to perform autopsies on the elderly, or as Dr. Crippen says, “Do you really want to chop-up granny?”
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Unless there is money or a criminal investigation at stake, why would you want to chop up any decedent?
You only chop up a relative to increase the chances you or your family live longer. For instance, a father dies suddenly in his 40s. You would want a pathologist to examine his heart and you would also want to make a visit with your doctor.
Both of your siblings die and no clear cause is given. Hack em up. Etc.
As a PCP I had to fill out DCs for other docs patients who hadn’t been seen in our office in over a year. Over 70 and found dead at home? MI it is! The family and the funeral home want that DC ASAP and if there is no indication for an autopsy, you are left guessing.Sparing the details, my father’s DC said just “probable MI,” when he in fact died from major trauma. He was DNR, but COD was trauma resulting in cardiopulmonary arrest because they couldn’t do CPR.
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