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Title: A Study of the Autopsy.
Author: Waldron, H. A.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3551 1271
Awarding Body: University of Birmingham
Current Institution: University of Birmingham
Date of Award: 1977
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The history of the autopsy is outlined together with the factors which have led to its decline in recent times. In the Birmingham teaching hospitals the autopsy rate has fallen from 74.4% in 1958 to 46.0% in 1972, although it is still substantially higher than either the rate for the West Midlands region or England and Wales (27.3% and 25.8% respectively in 1972. Most clinicians in the West Midlands and Trent regions who replied to a questionnaire considered that the autopsy has an important role to play in their own practice and in undergraduate training. The reasons given for the decline in the autopsy include the reluctance of relatives to give their consent, a change in the attitude of junior staff, increased confidence in diagnosis and deficiencies in the pathological service. A retrospective study of ante-mortem and post-mortem diagnoses at the two largest teaching hospitals in Birmingham showed that they disagreed in about 20% of cases in the four years studied, 1959,1964,1968 and 1972. The results of a prospective study which ran from Ist January, 1975 to Ist April, 1976 in the West Midlands and Trent regions showed that there was complete disagreement between antemortem and post-mortem diagnoses in 26.1% of the 1117 cases studied. There was partial disagreement in a further 26.4% of cases. The. level of disagreement increased with age, was higher in females than males, and in non-teaching than teaching hospitals.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available