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International Poster Journal of Dentistry and Oral Medicine



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Int Poster J Dent Oral Med 5 (2003), No. 2     15. June 2003

Int Poster J Dent Oral Med 2003, Vol 5 No 02, Poster 170

Recommendations on age diagnostics of living persons in criminal proceedings

age diagnostics by order of the court. a case report

Language: English

Authors: Dr.med. Dr.med.dent. Claus Grundmann, German Academy of Forensic Odonto-Stomatology (AKFOS)
Dr.med. Dr.med.dent. Klaus Rötzscher, German Academy of Forensic Odonto-Stomatology (AKFOS)

2-7 September 2002
16th Meeting of the International Association of Forensic Sciences
Montpellier, France


Very often, groups - more than 50 people - are illegally brought across the borders into the Federal Republic of Germany. Many of those people, of course, remain jobless and without income. Most of them find their way to illegal jobs or into the world of crime. The number of foreigners without a documented or even registered date of birth is increasing.


An increasing number of arrested young people lead to more expertise by dentists, respectively interdisciplinary expert teams to eliminate the question whether juvenile deliquents become a case for prosecution or not.

Material and Methods

Presently, three existing methods of age estimation on living people are applied: morphological, radiological and dental examinations.

Legal background:
Whenever x-rays are needed (in these cases without medical indication), i.e. to proof the development - maturation - of the third molar judge´s decision is required in Germany:
· § 81a StPO - code of criminal procedure
· § 24,2 RöVO - decree of x-ray-treatment

  1. X-rays are allowed only for the use in medicine, dentistry and
  2. in special cases of crime control (see § 81a StPO).
  3. the examination is available without consent of the deliquent, when ordered by the judge.

· External examination of the deliquent (height, weight, sexual maturity etc.):

Fig. 1 Head en face: Black coloured hair with a fine moustache Fig. 2 Body en face (torso) Fig. 3 Body from reverse (torso) with typical femal hips, height 157 cm, weight 52,0 kg
Fig. 4 Sexual maturity: Mammae fully developed, papillae pigmented
Fig. 5 Armpit haired Fig. 6 Pubis: female characteristics fully developed.

· Oral examination including dental status and OPG

Fig.7 Jaws in occlusion
Fig.8 OPG of the right molars. Tooth 47 is missing. Fig.9 OPG of the left molars.

The third molars female stages developed (by DEMIRJIAN) -
KAHL / SCHWARZE define stage E:
Tooth 18 15,6 ± 1,9
Tooth 28 15,9 ± 1,2
KAHL / SCHWARZE define stage F regarding the female wisdom teeth with an age (in years) :
Tooth 18 17,5 ± 4,0
Tooth 28 16,7 ± 3,5
Tooth 38 16,7 ± 3,5
Tooth 48 17,4 ± 3,1

· Roentgenogram of the wristbone

Fig. 10 Epiphysial lines of ulna and radius are still smooth marked. The interstices of ulna and radius are mostly ossified, but perceptible.

THIEMANN / NITZ and GREULICH / PYLE define the roentgenogram of the left wristbone belonging to a 15-16 years-old female.
· The combination of the mentioned methods leads to a better result.


The sexual maturity of the examined female is completely finished. The osseal growth of the left hand is not completely finished. The growth of the roots of the wisdom teeth is also not completely finished. Considering all findings it can be decided, that the given day of birth (october 10, 1988) is not correct.


The expertise regarding the age of an accused female individual - the given date of birth: October 10, 1988. The statement of the real age is important for the proceeding. The given date is called in question. The expertise leads to results belonging to a 15-16 years-old female. Every year the working group proofs the practicability of the methods, points the way to the future and organises lectures regarding the results in research and in practice.


  1. Rötzscher K, Schmeling A, Geserick G, Kaatsch HJ, Marré B, Reisinger W, Riepert T, Ritz-Timme S, Rösing FW: Empfehlungen für die Altersdiagnostik bei Lebenden im Strafverfahren. Erarbeitet von der Arbeitsgemeinschaft für forensische Altersdiagnostik der DGZMK und der DGRM. Dtsch Zahnärztl Z 2000, 56,10: 573-574
  2. Rötzscher K, Schmeling A, Geserick G, Kaatsch HJ, Marré B, Reisinger W, Riepert T, Ritz-Timme S, Rösing FW: Recommendations on Age Diagnostics of Living Persons in Criminal Proceedings. Elaborated by the German interdisciplinary working group for age diagnostics. Newsl IOFOS 2001, 23,1: 8-9


AGFAD - Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Altersdiagnostik - German Working Group for Age Diagnostics
AKFOS - Arbeitskreis für Forensische Odonto-Stomatologie - German Academy of Forensic Odonto-Stomatology
OPG - Orthopantomogramm - orthoradiogram
RöVO - Röntgenverordnung - decree of x-ray-treatment
StPO - Strafprozessordnung - code of criminal procedure

This Poster was submitted by Dr.med. Dr.med.dent. Claus Grundmann.

Correspondence address:
Dr.med. Dr.med.dent. Claus Grundmann.
German Academy of Forensic Odonto-Stomatology (AKFOS)
Arnikaweg 15
D-47445 Moers