Autopsy guidelines series

The College autopsy guidelines are technical documents which have been written as an aid for practising pathologists carrying out a coroners post-mortem. As such this guidance may contain some distressing information and is not intended for friends and relatives of the deceased. Detailed information on post-mortem for members of the public can be found here and on the Human Tissue Authority website.

Published documents

Documents under consultation:

Members can comment on draft documents here.

Documents under review: 

The College is currently undertaking a large programme to update the autopsy scenarios originally published as guidance in 2005.  This update will ensure that our guidance meets the modern demands on autopsy practice and ensures they relate pragmatically to coronial practice which constitutes over 90% of post mortem work in the UK. 

This update will be complete by the end of 2018.  

Assigned:

Unassigned: 

New documents in development:

Assigned:

  • Guidelines on autopsy practice: Death possibly associated with bariatric surgery
  • Guidelines on autopsy practice: The decomposed cadaver
  • Guidelines on autopsy practice: Deaths following known or suspected hanging
  • Guidelines on autopsy practice: Hazard Group 3 infections 
  • Guidelines on autopsy practice: Sudden unexpected death in infancy (SUDI)
  • Guidelines on autopsy practice: Autopsy after organ donation
  • Guidelines on autopsy practice: Aviation deaths
  • Guidelines on autopsy practice: Death possibly associated with post intervention and surgery

Unassigned:

  • Guidelines on autopsy practice: Removal of radioactive implants (prostate)
  • Guidelines on autopsy practice: Traumatic brain injury
  • Guidelines on autopsy practice: Deaths associated with stroke