Black cracks: staining of fracture lines

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© 2017, Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. During the investigation of fresh bone fractures, it might be difficult to visualize all the fracture lines that could contribute to the interpretation of the biomechanics behind a fracture. To optimize the examination of the fracture, the bones should first be defleshed to expose the osseous surface. To reveal small fracture lines more clearly, we developed two easy, fast, cheap and non-destructive methods to enhance fracture lines and bone defects by coloring the fracture lines with ink. One method consists of cooking the bone in ink, and the second method uses capillary action for ink penetration. We strongly recommend the use of the latter method with Talens® Black Indian Ink for the clearest results.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)379-382
JournalForensic Science, Medicine, and Pathology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2017


  • Biomechanics
  • Bone fractures
  • Forensic anthropology
  • Ink
  • Perimortem


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