Suicide by Hypothermia: A Report of Two Cases and 23-Year Retrospective Review

  title={Suicide by Hypothermia: A Report of Two Cases and 23-Year Retrospective Review},
  author={Rebecca M. Wilcoxon and Lorren W. Jackson and Andrew M. Baker},
  journal={Academic Forensic Pathology},
  pages={462 - 475}
Hypothermia deaths are frequently accidental and associated with impairment by alcohol, injuries, mental illness, or natural disease. Hypothermia as a method of suicide is unusual, with only nine case reports in the scientific literature. In the early months of 2014, during one of the coldest winters on record, the Hennepin County Medical Examiner's office investigated and certified two unrelated cases of suicide by hypothermia; we describe the salient features of these cases. A retrospective… 

Figures and Tables from this paper



Complex Suicide: An Unusual Case with Six Methods Applied

This is the first case of CSs reviewed in the literature where six suicide methods were applied and it was concluded that stab wounds to the head were the cause of death, while external hemorrhage and hypothermia were contributing factors.

[Suicide by hypothermia with intentional partial undressing].

The case report describes the fatality of a young woman dying from suicidal hypothermia, found partly undressed, which was part of her scheduled plan and not a consequence of paradoxical undressing.

[Death in a rainwater tank--unusual death by hypothermia].

Formal autopsy of a 74-year-old depressive woman found dead in a rain barrel with her head above the water level in February at an outdoor temperature of 0 degrees C revealed no findings typical of drowning, but there was no morphological evidence of hypothermia.

Fatality from drinking denatured alcohol and hypothermia.

  • A. Jones
  • Medicine
    Journal of analytical toxicology
  • 2011
The lower concentrations of ethanol, acetone, and isopropanol in postmortem blood compared with antemortem blood indicate the metabolism of these substances during the 21-h survival period when the patient received emergency hospital treatment.

[An unusual finding in a case of hypothermia].

The unusual autopsy findings in this case due to hypothermia were focal hemorrhages and necrosis of the pancreas and hemorrhagic infarction of the descendending colon.

Hypothermia: autopsy findings and vitreous glucose.

  • J. Coe
  • Medicine
    Journal of forensic sciences
  • 1984
Establishing hypothermia as the cause of death requires a proper history of exposure and the absence of any other clear-cut lethal factor and certain biochemical tests may provide supporting evidence, including an elevated vitreous glucose in a nondiabetic individual.

Seasonality of Suicidal Behavior

Comprehensive evaluation of risk factors which could be linked to the seasonal variation in suicide is important, not only to identify the major driving force for the seasonality of suicide, but also to lead to better suicide prevention in general.

Handbook of forensic pathology

The forensic autopsy versus an external examination Three steps of medicolegal death investigation handling of bodies at the scene Handling of bodies from a hospital Handling of corpses at the morgue Identification of bodies The Autopsy Report Heading of report External Examination Evidence of Injury Internal Examination Microscopic Examination Toxicology Findings Opinion physical evidence Preservation of physical evidence on the body Recovery of physicalEvidence.