Document Detail

Microscopy of human fetal lung and the diagnosis of postnatal respiration.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  865229     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
1. The difficulty of correlating the microscopic appearances of the lungs in cases of stillbirth and early postnatal death with the results of hydrostatic tests in these cases is stressed. 2. Histologic criteria which depend on the presence of alveoli as evidence of extrauterine respiration are criticized. 3. The view is submitted that the alveolar pattern is the result of a normal developmental process occurring in utero, possibly accentuated by intrauterine fetal respiratory movements, but independent of extrauterine respiration. 4. The glandlike appearance of the lung which has been illustrated in standard textbooks as an example of unrespired fetal lung is probably seen only in relatively early embryos in whom the problem of respiration is unlikely to arise. 5. At or near term the alveolar pattern in the human fetus has developed, certainly in parts of the lung, to such a degree in utero that it cannot readily be distinguished from the pattern seen in the newly-born infant who has breathed for a short time in an extrauterine environment. 6. This view that the alveolar pattern is already fairly well developed at full-term makes for a more intelligible appreciation of the structural appearances seen in the immediately postnatal lung as well as of the physiology of respiration with the first extrauterine breath. 7. The views outlined for the development of the human lung in utero are completely corroborated by experimental studies on pig embryos, intraocular lung implants and the structure of sequestrated lung tissue unconnected with the respiratory tract. 8. Microscopic examination of the lungs may assist in determining fetal age. 9. The medicolegal significance of these observations is discussed.
H A Shapiro
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Legal medicine annual     Volume:  1976     ISSN:  0075-8590     ISO Abbreviation:  Leg Med Annu     Publication Date:  1977  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1977-07-18     Completed Date:  1977-07-18     Revised Date:  2004-11-17    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0206765     Medline TA:  Leg Med Annu     Country:  UNITED STATES    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  39-52     Citation Subset:  IM    
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MeSH Terms
Fetal Death
Fetus / anatomy & histology*
Forensic Medicine
Gestational Age
Infant, Newborn
Lung / embryology*
Pulmonary Alveoli / embryology

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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