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Report No. 84

IV. Chronology and Modes

4.12. Chronology and modes of examination.-

We have so far dealt with matters on which legislative provisions have been suggested by others or recommended by us, on the subject of medical examination. It would be useful now to refer to certain other aspects. As to the chronological stages of the examination and the mode of conducting it, there is interesting material available. A distinguished writer suggests1 that date, time and place of examination should be noted at the commencement of the examination and the time at which the examination terminated should also be noted. Further, he adds, history of the person examined is important.

Full general history must be taken and this must include all previous illness, operation and accident. It should also include the time and nature of the last meal eaten, the amount and nature of the alcoholic drink consumed and the time it was consumed and the amount, nature and time of any medication taken. Specific history should be taken, preferably from the complainant and before any account is heard from the police authority, instructing solicitor or parent. This history is an essential part of the clinical examination and full notes must be made of it because one of the essentials of physical examination is to decide it the physical findings are compatible with the history taken.

1. David M. Paul The Medical Examination in Sexual Offences, (1975 July), Vol. 15, No. 3, Medicine, Science & Law, pp. 154, 162.

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