Korean J Leg Med.  2018 Nov;42(4):111-125. 10.7580/kjlm.2018.42.4.111.

A Statistical Analysis on Forensic Autopsies Performed in Korea in 2017

  • 1Forensic Medicine Division, National Forensic Service Gwangju Institute, Jangseong, Korea.
  • 2Biomedical Research Institute, Chonnam National University Hospital, Gwangju, Korea. pdrdream@gmail.com
  • 3Emergency Medical Center, Chonnam National University Hospital, Gwangju, Korea.
  • 4National Forensic Service Seoul Institute, Seoul, Korea.
  • 5Medical Examiner's Office, National Forensic Service, Wonju, Korea.
  • 6National Forensic Service, Wonju, Korea.


Statistical analysis was performed on national forensic autopsy data collected in the Republic of Korea, with the exception of Ulsan, during 2017. A total of 8,777 cases were categorized based on the region; information was provided by the Police Agency and the Coast Guard regarding sex, age, manner of death, and cause of death. Analysis of the manner of death revealed that 3,971 cases (45.2%) were unnatural deaths, 3,679 cases (41.9%) were natural deaths, and 1,127 cases (12.8%) were unknown deaths. Among the unnatural deaths, the majority of the cases (1,740 cases, 43.8%) were accidents, 1,316 cases (33.1%) were suicide, 385 cases (9.7%) were homicide, and 530 cases (13.3%) were undetermined deaths. Among the unnatural deaths, the majority of the cases (1,575 cases, 39.7%) were trauma, followed by 793 cases (20.0%) of poisoning and 689 cases (17.4%) of asphyxia. Falling down was the major cause of death by trauma (737 cases, 46.8%). As a result of the classification of asphyxia based on previous study, strangulation was the major cause, with 538 cases (78.1%). Among the natural deaths, heart disease was the major cause (1,790 cases, 48.7%), followed by vascular disease (697 cases, 18.9%).


Autopsy; Cause of death; Statistical data interpretation; Korea

MeSH Terms

Accidental Falls
Cause of Death
Data Interpretation, Statistical
Heart Diseases
Military Personnel
Republic of Korea
Vascular Diseases

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