Neonaticide represents a particular issue both to society and forensic field, being admitted nowadays as a crime all over the world. Apart from common gross and microscopic examination of the newborn cadaver, thorough examination of the umbilical cord during autopsy proved many times its major utility in solving neonaticide cases. Although by its constituents, the umbilical cord is a quite resistant structure to bending and compression, mechanical properties vary along its surface, with gestational age or various pregnancy disorders, as well as genetic anomalies of the fetus, so that a rupture may occur. The authors present the case of a newborn found dead in a sink – about whom mother states that he accidentally fell in the feces, the moment of the birth being a surprise – and discuss on the circumstances when the umbilical cord may rupture. This issue is most important when is a need to differentiate between a true accident and an intentional newborn homicide by the mother set forth as an accident.
Key- words: umbilical cord, tensile strength, forensic, neonaticide.
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