Diagnosis of disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC) was made in 64 cases (16.2%) among a total of 395 autopsy cases. There were 31 men and 33 women. Their ages ranged from 31 to 91 years (mean 76.3). Underlying diseases were mainly malignancy and sepsis. Fresh cardiac lesions were found in 40 cases (62.5%). Coronary thrombosis was found in 13 cases (20.3%) and myocardial necrosis in 24 cases (37.5%), with acute myocardial infarction in 9 and focal necrosis in 15. Nonbacterial thrombotic endocarditis was found in 17 cases (26.6%), mural thrombi in 11 (17.2%), and bleeding of the heart in 11 (17.2%). Platelet count, fibrinogen and euglobulin lysis time were not correlated with myocardial necrosis nor coronary thrombosis. Increase of fibrin degradation products correlated with the presence of coronary thrombosis with or without myocardial necrosis. DIC was found with a high incidence in the aged, and many of them were complicated with fresh cardiac lesions. Development of acute myocardial infarction depends on the small thrombi in the severe stenosis of the main coronary arteries or on the multiple microthrombi in the peripheral coronary branches.