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. 2017 Mar;27(3):1032-1043.
doi: 10.1007/s00330-016-4466-4. Epub 2016 Jun 29.

Forensic Use of the Greulich and Pyle Atlas: Prediction Intervals and Relevance

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Forensic Use of the Greulich and Pyle Atlas: Prediction Intervals and Relevance

K Chaumoitre et al. Eur Radiol. .

Abstract

Objective: The Greulich and Pyle (GP) atlas is one of the most frequently used methods of bone age (BA) estimation. Our aim is to assess its accuracy and to calculate the prediction intervals at 95% for forensic use.

Methods: The study was conducted on a multi-ethnic sample of 2614 individuals (1423 boys and 1191 girls) referred to the university hospital of Marseille (France) for simple injuries. Hand radiographs were analysed using the GP atlas. Reliability of GP atlas and agreement between BA and chronological age (CA) were assessed and prediction intervals at 95% were calculated.

Results: The repeatability was excellent and the reproducibility was good. Pearson's linear correlation coefficient between CA and BA was 0.983. The mean difference between BA and CA was -0.18 years (boys) and 0.06 years (girls). The prediction interval at 95% for CA was given for each GP category and ranged between 1.2 and more than 4.5 years.

Conclusion: The GP atlas is a reproducible and repeatable method that is still accurate for the present population, with a high correlation between BA and CA. The prediction intervals at 95% are wide, reflecting individual variability, and should be known when the method is used in forensic cases.

Key points: • The GP atlas is still accurate at the present time. • There is a high correlation between bone age and chronological age. • Individual variability must be known when GP is used in forensic cases. • Prediction intervals (95%) are large; around 4 years after 10 year olds.

Keywords: Forensic sciences; Greulich-Pyle atlas; Hand ossification; Skeletal age determination; X-ray.

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