Diagnostic utility of autopsy in a University hospital in Iran
Objective. The objective of this study were to evaluate the diagnostic utility of the autopsy in University hospital in Tehran, Iran. Methods. In this retrospective descriptive - analytic survey during a six years period from 1998 to 2003, autopsies in the Bahrami Children Hospital, a teriary care hospital in Tehran, were studied. The clinical and autopsy diagnoses were compared and categorized as follows: 1. Change ( clinical and autopsy diagnoses discordant), 2. Add (significant unexpected findings noted on the autopsy, although the clinical diagnosis was not altered), 3. Confirm ( clinical and autopsy diagnosis concordant), 4. Autopsy inconclusive. Results. Eighty four autopsies were studied. Out of 350 neonatal deaths in the period, autopsy was performed in 74 neonates (21%) and of 249 under 5 year deaths ( except neonates) autopsy was performed in only 10 cases (4%). In 61 cases (73%) the autopsy diagnoses confirmed the clinical diagnosis, in 10 cases (12%) it changed the clinical diagnosis, in 11 cases (13%) it significantly added to the clinical diagnosis and in 2 cases (2%) it was inconclusive. Conclusion. This study demonstrated that neonatal and infantile autopsy continued to provide clinically useful data in 25% of cases and remains an invaluable tool in pediatric medicine.