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Original scientific paper

Dental Identification of Tsunami Victims in Phuket, Thailand

Peter Schuller-Götzburg

Full text: croatian pdf 467 Kb

page 295-305

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Full text: english pdf 467 Kb

page 295-305

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In December 2004 a seaquake and its resulting tidal wave devastated large coastal regions in the Indian Ocean and cost about 250,000 human lives.
Material and Methods: In order to identify more than 3,680 victims from 39 nations in the area of Phuket/Thailand under Interpol’s coordinated efforts, more than 20 countries participated in the identification process at the Thai Tsunami Victim Identification –
Information Management Center (TTVI-IMC). Standard operating protocols of post mortem (PM) procedures were established. The ante mortem (AM) data of the victims were sent to Thailand and entered into the software program DVI System International (Plass Data Software, Denmark).
Results: Registration of post mortem data (PM), such as primary identification characteristics, as well as clothing and physical features (e.g. scars), was performed in a highly standardized manner directly at Phuket/Thailand. Ante mortem data (AM), including information about dental treatment (miniature radiographs, OPTG and treatment chart) were given particular attention. Only recent AM data of good quality permitted rapid and reliable identification of the victims. After one year the dental ID rate of about 55% proved the significance of the method. Of the 3680 officially registered victims who had died, 3272 could be identified. This equals an identification rate of 87.77%, of whom 44% were identified by their dental status.
Conclusion: Ninety-two per cent of the approximately 2,050 non-Thai victims, and 53% of the 1600 Thai victims, were identified. Thus, the overall ID rate per 22.11.2006 was 70%.


Forensic Dentistry, Dental Identification, Natural Disasters

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Article data in other languages: croatian

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