Pathology Associates Of Lexington, P.A.
Pathology Associates Of Lexington, P.A.
Pathology Associates Of Lexington, P.A.
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Death Investigation
  • Manner of death: is it natural, accidental, suicidal, or homicidal, or undetermined? Non-natural manners of death trigger forensic investigations.
  • Cause of death: especially in non-natural manner of death cases, it is important to know what caused the death.
  • Postmortem examinations: the examination of a dead person and the circumstances of death are always done to some extent (the most complete exam is an autopsy), depending on where the death occurred. The state agency for death investigation is either the office of a county Coroner or the office of the state or county Medical Examiner:
    1. death in a health care facility.
    2. death outside of a health care facility.
      • under the care of a physician:
        1. sudden unexpected death.
        2. an "understandable" death.
        3. not unexpected but not "understandable".
      • not under the care of a physician:
        1. sudden unexpected death.
        2. an "understandable" death.
        3. not unexpected but not "understandable".
  • Our group's autopsy involvement:
    • Hospital & Coroner's autopsies: We feel that locally performed, coroner-ordered postmortem examinations are highly effective when readily connected to a more expert source for selected homicide cases; our group is loosely connected to the forensic pathology practice of Joel Sexton, M.D. in Newberry, S.C. We provide services for Lexington Medical Center as well as the Lexington County Coroner's Office. There is no charge for hospital autopsies ordered on Lexington Medical Center patients; cost of Coroner's cases is paid by the county.
    • Private autopsies may be desired by the next of kin in order to evaluate the deceased's condition for family-interest reasons. Or they may be performed because of the family's belief that medical, product, or employer liability occurred. Where legal issues are the reason, it is highly advisable that the next of kin immediately contact the appropriate lawyer (your personal lawyer can help you) and thereby help to assure that the pathologist doing the autopsy is able to confidently address the legal issue. We are seldom, if ever, able to contract to do "private autopsies." Other midlands of S. C. options include:
  • Causes of unexpected sudden death.
  • The legal process of death certification.
  • Types of legal & illegal "killing" on-line outline.
  • Legally Determined Categories of on-line outline (with some illustrative cases).
  • Examples of value of forensic pathology in on line episodes of 48 Hours Mystery.
  • South Carolina Coroner Association and its links.
  • The blind coroner of Sumter County, S. C. (& others).
  • Careers: these careers may be in hospitals, doctor's offices, medical or dental schools, government agencies, or corporations. And, people can progress from one job to another with proper education, training, mentoring, and networking. Career guides: [ASIP]
    • Internet search: And, use any of those terms below (or "forensic careers") in one or more search engines to find more about career and job opportunities in pathology. And, on such as a Yahoo catalogue site, check along the lines of Science>Science in Society>Forensic Science & then such subheadings as forensic photography, forensic biologist, forensic epidemiologist, forensic video specialist, forensic artist, forensic serologist, forensic blood spatter analyst, forensic engineer, forensic botanist, forensic geneticist, forensic accountant, etc.
    • book: Forensic Science Careers 1stEdition by Blythe Camenson.   Paperback, 5.5” x 7.5”. VGM Career Books (A division of the McGraw-Hill Companies), 4255 West Touhy Avenue, Lincolnwood, Chicago, Illinois 60712-1975, USA. Publication Date 2001. x + 149 pages, ISBN 0-658-00102-7. Price US $12.95, Canada $18.95.
    • local courses:
      • Lexington or Irmo High School is said to offer a course in "forensic chemistry"
    • OTHER lab careers:
      • pathologist assistant: check the AAPA web site.
      • cytotechnologist: oversees specimen processing and performs the initial screening of the 1000s of cells on the cytoprep slides [ASCT website]
      • medical technologist: performs, manually or with sophisticated instruments, laboratory tests. Our hospital has one of 3 MT schools in S. C., & we graduated our first MT, Tammie Fuller, on 16 August 2004. Career info at [ASCP website as to careers (as of 2004 & since 1928, they have certified 395,000 persons in 24 different categories)]
      • histotechnologist: cut tissues to make slides for microscopy; one of ours has been taking certification education on-line during 2007-2008. [NSH website]
      • phlebotomist: the people who "draw" blood samples for lab testing; training requires less than a year.
      • clinical chemist: from an MT degree to a PhD degree, these folks focus on chemistry topics & activities.
      • clinical microbiologist: from an MT degree to a PhD degree, these folks focus on microbiology topics & activities.
      • administrative assistant: for lab department and/or pathologist group
      • pathology transcriptionist: types reports
      • communications associate: a spectrum of various blendings of transcriptionist, clerical assisting, customer service representative, pathology reports status expediter, etc.
      • prep tech (clinical lab, cytology, pathology): work with and prepare specimens
      • support tech: an entry level, sort of a blend of prep tech and clerical assistant
      • autopsy diener: help pathologist with autopsy
      • clerical assistant: assists with record keeping and mailing and faxing functions
      • customer service rep, lab: persons who call on clients of a lab to make sure they are updated on lab changes and new products.
      • customer service rep, industry supplier: persons who call on clients of the product vendor to make sure they are updated on company changes and new products.
      • sales rep, lab: persons who either seek out new customers or convince clients to buy new products
      • sales rep, industry supplier: persons who either seek out new customers or convince clients to buy new products
    • Forensic Examiners organization: ACFEI (forensic pathologist, forensic nurse, forensic civil engineer, forensic [you name it])
Other Sources Of Information
  1. A beginner website, Explore Forensics
  2. PathMax site & click on the forensic folder
  3. National Association of medical Examiners (check out "training" area and accredited programs)
  4. Forensic Medicine for Medical Students
  5. And check the ASCP site and check the "Lab Careers" link at the bottom of their home page.
  6. Virginia Institute of Forensic Science and Medicine may be ficticious (noted forensic novelist, Patricia Cornwell, is a key supporter).
  7. Newberry Pathology (our long-term friend and colleague, Dr. Joel Sexton's former practice) practitioners.
  8. Court TV's "Forensic Files" (Tru TV).
  9. the A&E channel: Cold Case Files; American Justice; Investigative Reports.
  10. Fox channel: Cops; America's Most Wanted.
  11. HBO: "America Undercover: Autopsy" .
  12. Lifetime Channel: Unsolved Mysteries.
  13. The Learning Channel: The Secrets of Forensic Science (9PM Thursdays); Scene of the Crime; Crime Scenes Uncovered.
  14. Discovery Channel's "The New Detectives: Case Studies in Forensic Science"; The FBI Files.
  15. CBS's CSI (Crime Scene Investigation), set in Las Vegas.
  16. NBC's "Crossing Jordan"
  17. Kruglick Law Offices excellent crime scene investigation CSI and forensics links page
  18. Zeno's Forensic Site: with notations and links to job and career areas.
  19. An on-line source detailing homicide cases, The Crime Library; drop various forensic topics or jobs (for example, "forensic biologist") into the home-page search engine and follow the links.
(posted Dec. 2001; latest addition 31 October 2010)
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