Computed tomography evaluation of the iliac crest apophysis: age estimation in living individuals.

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Computed tomography evaluation of the iliac crest apophysis: age estimation in living individuals.

Int J Legal Med. 2016 Jul;130(4):1101-7

Authors: Ekizoglu O, Inci E, Erdil I, Hocaoglu E, Bilgili MG, Kazimoglu C, Reisoglu A, Can IO

Determination of the ossification properties of the iliac apophysis is important not only in the clinical evaluation of patients undergoing orthopedic surgery but also in age estimation studies for forensic purposes. The literature includes both anthropological and radiological (conventional radiography, ultrasonography, and magnetic resonance imaging modalities) investigations of the different staging systems used for these purposes. In this study, we assessed the utility of computed tomography (CT) of the iliac crest apophysis in estimating forensic age. CT scans of the iliac crest apophysis of 380 patients (187 females, 193 males, and 10-29 years of age) were evaluated according to the four-stage system. Further subclassification did not give data properly due to the reference length measurement of the iliac wing with CT. Thus, in our series, stage 2 was first seen in 12 years of age and stage 3 in those 14 years of age in both sexes and on both sides of the pelvis. Stage 4 was first seen in 17 years of both sexes but only on the right side; on the left side, it appeared in females 18 years of age and in males 17 years of age. Present data was found consistent with previous pelvic radiographic findings. First seen ages for stage 2 and 3 are 12 and 14 years respectively which presented valuable information for legally important age thresholds. However, disadvantages of CT, including high-dose radiation exposure to gonads, the difficulty of evaluating the iliac crest, and the age boundary of 17 years, could make this method infeasible, as compared with hand wrist and pelvic radiographic methods. CT of the iliac crest has probably a greater utility where preexisting CT scans of the pelvic region are available, and it may be considered as a supportive method for age-estimation purposes.

PMID: 26914804 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]

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