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Magnetic resonance imaging for forensic age estimation in living children and young adults : a systematic review

(2020) PEDIATRIC RADIOLOGY. 50(12). p.1691-1708
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Abstract
Background The use of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in forensic age estimation has been explored extensively during the past decade. Objective To synthesize the available MRI data for forensic age estimation in living children and young adults, and to provide a comprehensive overview that can guide age estimation practice and future research. Materials and Methods MEDLINE, Embase and Web of Science were searched. Additionally, cited and citing articles and study registers were searched. Two authors independently selected articles, conducted data extraction, and assessed risk of bias. Study populations including living subjects up to 30 years were considered. Results Fifty-five studies were included in qualitative analysis and 33 in quantitative analysis. Most studies suffered from bias, including relatively small European (Caucasian) populations, varying MR-approaches and varying staging techniques. Therefore, pooling of the age distribution data was not appropriate. Reproducibility of staging was remarkably lower in clavicles than in any other anatomical structure. Age estimation performance was in line with the gold standard, which uses radiographs, with mean absolute errors ranging from 0.85 to 2.0 years. The proportion of correctly classified minors ranged from 65% to 91%. Multi-factorial age estimation performed better than based on a single anatomical site. Conclusion More multi-factorial age estimation studies are necessary, together with studies testing if the MRI data can safely be pooled. The current review results can guide future studies, help medical professionals to decide on the preferred approach for specific cases, and help judicial professionals to interpret the evidential value of age estimation results.
Keywords
Magnetic resonance imaging, Age estimation, Child, Adolescent, Young adult, DISTAL RADIAL EPIPHYSIS, SPHENO-OCCIPITAL SYNCHONDROSIS, SKELETAL AGE, BONE-AGE, TIBIAL EPIPHYSIS, 3RD MOLAR, AUTOMATED-DETERMINATION, FOOTBALL PLAYERS, GROWTH-PLATE, T MRI

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MLA
De Tobel, Jannick, et al. “Magnetic Resonance Imaging for Forensic Age Estimation in Living Children and Young Adults : A Systematic Review.” PEDIATRIC RADIOLOGY, vol. 50, no. 12, 2020, pp. 1691–708, doi:10.1007/s00247-020-04709-x.
APA
De Tobel, J., Bauwens, J., Parmentier, G., Franco, A., Pauwels, N., Verstraete, K., & Thevissen, P. W. (2020). Magnetic resonance imaging for forensic age estimation in living children and young adults : a systematic review. PEDIATRIC RADIOLOGY, 50(12), 1691–1708. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00247-020-04709-x
Chicago author-date
De Tobel, Jannick, Jeroen Bauwens, Griet Parmentier, Ademir Franco, Nele Pauwels, Koenraad Verstraete, and Patrick W. Thevissen. 2020. “Magnetic Resonance Imaging for Forensic Age Estimation in Living Children and Young Adults : A Systematic Review.” PEDIATRIC RADIOLOGY 50 (12): 1691–1708. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00247-020-04709-x.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
De Tobel, Jannick, Jeroen Bauwens, Griet Parmentier, Ademir Franco, Nele Pauwels, Koenraad Verstraete, and Patrick W. Thevissen. 2020. “Magnetic Resonance Imaging for Forensic Age Estimation in Living Children and Young Adults : A Systematic Review.” PEDIATRIC RADIOLOGY 50 (12): 1691–1708. doi:10.1007/s00247-020-04709-x.
Vancouver
1.
De Tobel J, Bauwens J, Parmentier G, Franco A, Pauwels N, Verstraete K, et al. Magnetic resonance imaging for forensic age estimation in living children and young adults : a systematic review. PEDIATRIC RADIOLOGY. 2020;50(12):1691–708.
IEEE
[1]
J. De Tobel et al., “Magnetic resonance imaging for forensic age estimation in living children and young adults : a systematic review,” PEDIATRIC RADIOLOGY, vol. 50, no. 12, pp. 1691–1708, 2020.
@article{8671438,
  abstract     = {Background The use of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in forensic age estimation has been explored extensively during the past decade. 
Objective To synthesize the available MRI data for forensic age estimation in living children and young adults, and to provide a comprehensive overview that can guide age estimation practice and future research. 
Materials and Methods MEDLINE, Embase and Web of Science were searched. Additionally, cited and citing articles and study registers were searched. Two authors independently selected articles, conducted data extraction, and assessed risk of bias. Study populations including living subjects up to 30 years were considered. 
Results Fifty-five studies were included in qualitative analysis and 33 in quantitative analysis. Most studies suffered from bias, including relatively small European (Caucasian) populations, varying MR-approaches and varying staging techniques. Therefore, pooling of the age distribution data was not appropriate. 
Reproducibility of staging was remarkably lower in clavicles than in any other anatomical structure. Age estimation performance was in line with the gold standard, which uses radiographs, with mean absolute errors ranging from 0.85 to 2.0 years. The proportion of correctly classified minors ranged from 65% to 91%. Multi-factorial age estimation performed better than based on a single anatomical site. 
Conclusion More multi-factorial age estimation studies are necessary, together with studies testing if the MRI data can safely be pooled. The current review results can guide future studies, help medical professionals to decide on the preferred approach for specific cases, and help judicial professionals to interpret the evidential value of age estimation results.},
  author       = {De Tobel, Jannick and Bauwens, Jeroen and Parmentier, Griet and Franco, Ademir and Pauwels, Nele and Verstraete, Koenraad and Thevissen, Patrick W.},
  issn         = {0301-0449},
  journal      = {PEDIATRIC RADIOLOGY},
  keywords     = {Magnetic resonance imaging,Age estimation,Child,Adolescent,Young adult,DISTAL RADIAL EPIPHYSIS,SPHENO-OCCIPITAL SYNCHONDROSIS,SKELETAL AGE,BONE-AGE,TIBIAL EPIPHYSIS,3RD MOLAR,AUTOMATED-DETERMINATION,FOOTBALL PLAYERS,GROWTH-PLATE,T MRI},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {12},
  pages        = {1691--1708},
  title        = {Magnetic resonance imaging for forensic age estimation in living children and young adults : a systematic review},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00247-020-04709-x},
  volume       = {50},
  year         = {2020},
}

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