A case of unexplained lividity

classic Classic list List threaded Threaded
1 message Options
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view

A case of unexplained lividity

Matthew Schacht
When a person dies, and their heart stops pumping, blood is pulled down by gravity causing a red or purpulish color to form on the parts of the body closest to the ground (i.e. lividity). However, what if a lividity is found to exist on both the highest and lowest parts of a prostrate body, e.g. both the top and bottom portion of a thigh? This would seem to defy gravity, wouldn't it?

One explanation I have heard is that when a body is moved after death, this kind of dual lividity can occur, because upon death blood pools in one portion of the body, and then when the body is move, blood pools in a new portion.

Does anyone know if this explanation has merit?

Also, some have suggested that alternative explanations exist, for instance, a fire burning a body or inhalation of CO2 prior to death can cause both high and low lividity.

Email me offlist if you have any thoughts on these questions at MatthewSchacht@gmail.com, unless you think the community would benefit from your response.