An Unusual Death by Transcranial Stab Wound Journal Articles uri icon

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  • Penetrating stab wounds of the brain are uncommonly seen in modern times and occur almost exclusively in homicides. We report an unusual death by self-stabbing. A 24-year-old man was found dead at home, the handle of a kitchen knife protruding from his forehead. Data such as the psychiatric history of the victim, the multiplicity and site of wounds, the implement used, the presence of hesitation, and defense wounds were studied to elucidate the manner of death, and the suicidal nature of the event was established after police investigation. Atypical injuries require a careful forensic investigation, and medico-legal aspects of the differentiation between homicide and suicide are discussed in this particular case. A review of the literature revealed few cases of suicidal transcranial stab wounds.


  • Saint-Martin, Pauline
  • Prat, Sebastien
  • Bouyssy, Marie
  • Sarraj, Saad
  • O'Byrne, Patrick

publication date

  • September 2008