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J Forensic Leg Med. 2014 Mar;23:80-3. doi: 10.1016/j.jflm.2014.02.005. Epub 2014 Feb 20.

Autopsy in Islam and current practice in Arab Muslim countries.

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Department of Pathology, University of Dammam, Saudi Arabia. Electronic address:
Forensic Medicine Center in Dammam, Saudi Arabia; Egyptian Forensic Medicine Authority, Egypt.


Autopsy, or post-mortem examination, is the dissection of a dead body. It is performed for many reasons. Attitudes toward dead bodies vary with religious beliefs and cultural and geographical backgrounds. We have carried out an extensive literature review to determine the Islamic view and current practice of Autopsy, in at least four Arab countries which published their experiences. Several research articles have studied the history of Islamic Autopsy as well as the current situation and legal debates about it. The overwhelming conclusion is that data is lacking. More must be published from Arabic Muslim countries and more research done to correct misconceptions. We also recommend more application of non-invasive Autopsy.


Autopsy; History of autopsy; Islam; Practice of autopsy

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