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National Journal of Maxillofacial Surgery
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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 25-30

A study of lip prints and its reliability as a forensic tool

1 Department of Oral Pathology and Microbiology, King George Medical University, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India
2 Department of Oral Pathology and Microbiology, Rishiraj College of Dental Sciences and Research Centre, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
3 Department of Oral Pathology and Microbiology, VYWS Dental College and Hospital, Amravati, Maharashtra, India
4 Department of Forensic Sciences and Toxicology, King George Medical University, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India
5 Department of Oral Pathology and Microbiology, Babu Banarasi Das College of Dental Sciences, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Yogendra Verma
Department of Oral Pathology and Microbiology, King George Medical University, Lucknow - 226 003, Uttar Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0975-5950.168227

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Introduction: Lip prints, like fingerprints, are unique to an individual and can be easily recorded. Therefore, we compared direct and indirect lip print patterns in males and females of different age groups, studied the inter- and intraobserver bias in recording the data, and observed any changes in the lip print patterns over a period of time, thereby, assessing the reliability of lip prints as a forensic tool. Materials and Methods: Fifty females and 50 males in the age group of 15 to 35 years were selected for the study. Lips with any deformity or scars were not included. Lip prints were registered by direct and indirect methods and transferred to a preformed registration sheet. Direct method of lip print registration was repeated after a six-month interval. All the recorded data were analyzed statistically. Results: The predominant patterns were vertical and branched. More females showed the branched pattern and males revealed an equal prevalence of vertical and reticular patterns. There was an interobserver agreement, which was 95%, and there was no change in the lip prints over time. Indirect registration of lip prints correlated with direct method prints. Conclusion: Lip prints can be used as a reliable forensic tool, considering the consistency of lip prints over time and the accurate correlation of indirect prints to direct prints.

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