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Changes in fetal autopsy patterns over a 10-year period
  1. Frédérique Jones1,
  2. Pascal Thibon1,
  3. Corinne Jeanne-Pasquier1,2,
  4. Maria Mandon2,3,
  5. Arnaud Molin2,4,5,
  6. Bernard Guillois1,5,6,
  7. Guillaume Benoist1,3,5,
  8. Michel Dreyfus1,3,5
  1. 1 CHU de Caen, Réseau de Périnatalité, Caen, France
  2. 2 Laboratoire de Foeto-pathologie, Service d'Anatomo-pathologie, CHU de Caen, Caen, France
  3. 3 Service de Gynécologie-Obstétrique, CHU de Caen, Caen, France
  4. 4 Service de Génétique, CHU de Caen, Caen, France
  5. 5 Université de Caen Basse-Normandie, Medical School, Caen, France
  6. 6 Service de Néonatologie, CHU de Caen, Caen, France
  1. Correspondence to Dr Pascal Thibon, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Caen, Caen 14033, Cedex 9, France; thibon-p{at}

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Among diagnostic tests for stillbirth, fetal autopsy is an important audit tool to identify the cause of death. However, many countries have reported a decrease in autopsy rates,1 ,2 due either to more frequent refusal from parents or to fewer proposals of this examination.

We measured the evolution of autopsy refusal rate over a 10-year period in a French region and identified the circumstances associated with refusal: all fetal deaths registered in the Lower Normandy perinatal death registry from 2005 to 2014 were included (except induced abortions). The decade was divided into three periods to reduce …

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  • Contributors FJ and PT planned the study, collected data, carried out the analyses and drafted the initial manuscript. CJ-P, MM and AM participated in the data collection and reviewed the manuscript. BG, GB, MD critically reviewed and revised the manuscript before approving the final manuscript as submitted.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.