352 3VEEDICAI, JURISPRUDENCE
perform their functions after the birth of the child and are, therefore, obli-
terated. Thus, tiy^^nbilicial arteries begin to contract in about ten hours
after birth, and are completely closed by the third day. The umbilical vein
and the ductus venosus are the next to contract. For the first three days the
contraction is rather slow, but complete obliteration occurs on'the fourth or
fifth day. The ductus arteriosus begins to contract first at the aortic end,
is reduced to the size of a crowquill by the seventh day and usually closes
completely by the tenth day. The closure of the foramen ovale generally
occurs by the eighth or tenth day. Sometimes, it remains patent upto the
second year, while in a few cases it remains open throughout life giving rise
to cyanosis, a condition known as Morbus coeruleus. In rare cases the
foramen ovale has been closed at birth.
IV. WHAT WAS THE CAUSE OF DEATH?
The death of the child may occur from natural, accidental or criminal
1. Immaturity. If the child is prematurely born, it generally dies
immeiiiately after birth. In the case of the premature birth of a child the
question may arise as to whether the birth was criminally induced or not,
for under the Indian Penal Code, the criminal induction of premature labour
is an offence, but not culpable homicide, though under the English law, a
person is guilty of murder, if he does an act by which a child is born
prematurely so that it is not capable of living, and dies in consequence of
-its exposure to the external world.
2. Debility. The child may be of full-term, and yet may die after birth
from^Effiiy dueTcTfhe want of general development. In such a case no
disease is detected, but some portions of the lungs may be found in a state
of atelectasis from feeble respiration.
^' JSSSISH^^P^5681568* These are syphilis and specific fevers, such
as smalFpo^^aiue, etc. attaclong the mother, or diseases of the child's
internal organs, viz. the lungs, heart and brain.
Syphilis is the usual cause of the death of the foetus. Specific fevers
cause death from the toxaemic condition of the blood produced by the attack
on the mother, or from the attack on the child itself. Of the diseases of the
internal organs, hepatizafton and tubercle of the lungs are common. Hie
heart affections are rare, while diseases of the brain may destroy life without
leaving any traces behind.
. This may occur from the umbilical cord, stomach,
5. MaKonaaii<Mis.-^^^e are acephalous and anencephalous monsters
or cKtfen born with congenital abnormalities of the blood vessels, heart,
or alimentary canal. It must be remembered that monstrosity or malfor-
mation is no justification for taking the life of an infant. Again, it must be
remembered that monsters do not necessarily die soon after birth.
6. JQfeiKg&jrf; tfee Placenta. Disease of the placenta or its accidental
^jaraT^^ESna the uterine walTmasTcause death of the foetus. This can
foe detected* 1>y examining the placenta or by examining the uterus, if the
is dead and her body is available for post-mortem examination.
-SptefiBi of jEteJ^^gŁ=r!tjg,ljDay occur from mucus or
[aspirated iaiS'"ffieEySor from the enlargement of the thyrnus
Placenta Praro* or Abnormal Gestation. Any of these conditions
viay <SWsfcHftePdeaU* of ifae 'fetus.