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Autopsy Pathology

Sierra Pathology Associates performs hospital autopsies at Renown Regional Medical Center and Renown Medical Center South Meadows. Even with advances in modern medicine, sometimes patients die for unclear reasons. While the cause of death is not always revealed in an autopsy, the autopsy is still the best procedure to find out. The scope of forensic pathology includes investigation to determine the cause and manner of sudden unexplained and violent death. The goal is to solve mysteries caused by a criminal act or to understand a sudden, unexpected death.

The forensic pathologist determines the cause of death, a disease’s biologic behavior, the results of therapy and the presence of hereditary disorders. Evaluation of circumstances surrounding a death helps determine a “manner” of death such as accidental, natural, or homicidal. During an autopsy, a pathologist not only discovers the person’s cause of death, but may also discover more information about the progression of a disease. This discovery can help family and community members take preventive action for their own health and can aid researchers in developing treatments.