Ocular and Associated Systemic Findings in Suspected Child Abuse

A Necropsy Study

Susan G. Elner, Victor M. Elner, Michael Arnall, Daniel Albert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

76 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We reviewed complete ocular and systemic necropsy findings of 10 consecutive children who died of suspected child abuse. All 10 children had evidence at necropsy of blunt head trauma, although external signs of blunt trauma occasionally were covert. Ocular injuries were observed in 7 of the 10 cases and when present always included retinal, vitreous, and subdural optic nerve hemorrhages. In 5 cases, intrascleral hemorrhage from the circle of Zinn occurred at the sclera-optic nerve junction. In 4 cases, traumatic retinoschisis or tractional retinal folds were present. Anterior segment findings were uniformly consistent with blunt trauma. Hemosiderin, indicating old hemorrhage, was present in 3 cases. Intracranial hemorrhage, present in all cases with abnormal ocular findings, was always accompanied by signs of direct head trauma, such as subgaleal hemorrhage, skull fracture, cerebral contusion, or external contusions, which were sometimes subtle or hidden beneath the hair.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1094-1101
Number of pages8
JournalArchives of ophthalmology
Volume108
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1990
Externally publishedYes

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Child Abuse
Hemorrhage
Optic Nerve
Craniocerebral Trauma
Retinoschisis
Skull Fractures
Hemosiderin
Eye Injuries
Sclera
Intracranial Hemorrhages
Contusions
Wounds and Injuries
Hair

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology

Cite this

Ocular and Associated Systemic Findings in Suspected Child Abuse : A Necropsy Study. / Elner, Susan G.; Elner, Victor M.; Arnall, Michael; Albert, Daniel.

In: Archives of ophthalmology, Vol. 108, No. 8, 01.01.1990, p. 1094-1101.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Elner, Susan G. ; Elner, Victor M. ; Arnall, Michael ; Albert, Daniel. / Ocular and Associated Systemic Findings in Suspected Child Abuse : A Necropsy Study. In: Archives of ophthalmology. 1990 ; Vol. 108, No. 8. pp. 1094-1101.
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