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[J For Med]
J For Med. 2021; 35(1): 39-43 | DOI: 10.5505/adlitip.2021.50023  

An unusual decapitation injury.

Ashwini Kumar1, Rajiv Joshi1, Harvinder Singh Chhabra1, Navdeep Kaur2
1Department of Forensic Medicine, G.G.S. Medical College, Faridkot, Punjab, India.
2Department of Radiodiagnosis AIIMS, Bathinda, Punjab, India.

Ninety-three years ago, the term “Isadora Duncan Syndrome” became to be associated with neck injuries due to entanglement of a long scarf around the neck. Somewhere in time it became synonymous with “Long Scarf Syndrome” when more such accidental cases were reported mainly because long scarves had become a fashion fad in the west, in the early 1920's. In South Asia, however a long scarf is replaced by dupatta which is part of the traditional attire and many such cases have been reported particularly when women are riding a rickshaw or a motorcycle. Driving without proper protection further increases the risk of injury. These accidents are largely preventable, if proper attention is given to the causes leading to it. Among other fatal causes, death due to decapitation, especially related to traffic accidents, is very rarely found in practice of Forensic Medicine. Decapitation or beheading, is the total separation of the head from rest of the body. Such an injury is fatal in human beings and most other animals. We hereby report a case of decapitation injury, involving an adult female, aged 65 years, who died instantly when her dupatta accidentally got entangled in the rear wheel of the motor cycle on which she was riding pillion. This case was unusual and rare and baffled the authors and the police alike. A thorough examination however revealed absence of sharp or sharp heavy force injuries.

Keywords: Isadora Duncan Syndrome, Long Scarf Syndrome, Decapitation, Beheading, Accident, Road Traffic Accident.


Ashwini Kumar, Rajiv Joshi, Harvinder Singh Chhabra, Navdeep Kaur. An unusual decapitation injury.. J For Med. 2021; 35(1): 39-43

Sorumlu Yazar: Harvinder Singh Chhabra, India


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