Autopsy Study of Sudden Death Cases With Special Reference to Histopathological Changes in Heart
Keywords:Sudden Cardiac Death, Histopathology of heart.
Background: Sudden cardiac death and arrhythmia accounts for 15 – 20% of all deaths. Though Coronary
artery disease is the major cause of sudden deaths, diagnosis of other underlying causes is necessary. Hence we
intended to analyze the various cardiac causes related to sudden deaths and the associated histopathological
findings of heart.
Methods: Present study was an autopsy based cross sectional observational study conducted at Madurai
Medical College mortuary for a period of one year. 100 cases of sudden deaths were subjected to autopsy and
histopathological changes of heart were studied.
Results: In the present study, majority of cases belonged to the age group of 40 - 60 years with male preponderance.
In histopathological examination, atherosclerosis was the most common finding with involvement of left anterior
descending artery. Other findings include myocardial infarction, myocarditis, pericarditis and dysarrythmogenic
ventricular hypoplasia. Multiple cardiac lesions were noted in few cases.
Conclusion: An accurate diagnosis of the underlying morbidity at risk of sudden death either at postmortem
or in living patients and life threatening arrhythmias is the pre – requisite to adopt therapeutic and preventive
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