The analysis of a case involving potential head trauma (for protective authorities, prosecution, and/or defense attorneys) involves:

  • Review of medical records from birth, primary care, any emergency department visits, inpatient admissions
  • Review of autopsy report and photos where applicable
  • Review of investigative information

Types of Education Available for the Attorney:

These cases are medically complex for prosecutors, defense attorneys, and civil attorneys (cases of missed abuse or supervision liability). Topics for education in the context of an expert review include:

  • Anatomy of the head and reported injuries
  • Differential diagnosis (were other potential etiologies evaluated and/or excluded)
  • Was a proposed accidental mechanism considered and, if so, does an evidence base support consistency
  • Current literature of abusive head trauma (otherwise known as “Shaken Baby Syndrome”)
  • Consideration of what if any experts may be applicable for analysis of the elements in each case

Our approach is balanced and evidence based. As board-certified child abuse and emergency medicine physicians involved hands-on in the evaluation of children, we value the process of considering a differential diagnosis. The differential diagnosis in head injury/trauma includes child abuse, accidents, and a variety of medical problems that may mimic abuse.