Mandible - a tool for identification

Vasudha Ahuja, Prateek Rastogi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Identification of human remains is of prime importance in any medico-legal investigation and the determination of race, sex, age and stature remain the foremost criteria. In situations such as mass disasters and homicide, when the body is damaged beyond recognition, the mandible, being highly durable and sexually dimorphic, can be used for identification. Aim:The study aims at correlating mandibular measurements with gender and stature of an individual and estimating its effectiveness as an identification tool. Methods: This cross-sectional study was performed among 100 males and 100 females in Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore. The stature, length of the body and the ramus of the mandible (right and left) of each individual was measured. The ratio and sum of the lengths of the body and the ramus of mandible were calculated. Linear and multiple regression equations were calculated relating various mandibular measurements with gender and stature using SPSS 15.0. Results: Maximum correlation was established between the sum of the lengths of the ramus and body of the mandible with respect to gender and stature. The accuracy of gender estimation was calculated to be 85% for males and 83% for females. According to multiple regression equation, maximum predictive value of gender was 45.2 % while that for stature was 24.4% for males and 9% for females. Conclusion: This study suggests that the human mandible shows sexual diamorphism and bears great potential to serve as an efficient and affordable aid for medico-legal identification.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)313-316
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Indian Academy of Forensic Medicine
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 01-01-2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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