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Leg Med (Tokyo). 2003 Sep;5(3):175-80.

Sexual asphyxia by hanging--a case report and a review of the literature.

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  • 1Department of Legal Medicine, Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine, 5-1, Kusunoki-cho 7, Chuo-ku, Kobe 650-0017, Japan.


A case of sexual asphyxial death by hanging is presented. A 35-year-old male, found dead lying on his face in a bed of a truck cab, had hanged himself from a window frame using a leather belt. He was completely naked. There were pornographic and sadomasochistic magazines beneath his face, opened to pages depicted nude photographs of a woman. Autopsy findings revealed a ligature mark on the neck and petechial hemorrhages in the conjunctivae, but there were no hemorrhages in the neck muscles or fractures of the hyoid bone or the thyroid cartilage. The alcohol levels in the blood and urine were 0.78 and 0.45 mg/ml, respectively. The circumstances suggested that his death was accidental, and due to asphyxia by hanging performed to enhance sexual gratification during masturbation. Sexual asphyxia is reviewed and discussed.

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