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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 71-74

Cheiloscopy: A Vital Tool in Forensic Investigation for Personal Identification in Living and Dead Individuals

Department of Forensic Science, School of Basic and Applied Sciences, Galgotias University, Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Mamta Pal
Department of Forensic Science, School of Basic and Applied Sciences, Galgotias University, Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijfo.ijfo_15_20

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Personal identification is a vital task in any crime scene investigation where there is a scarcity of biological evidences, and their chances of contamination and degradation are also high if they are not collected and preserved properly. However, cheiloscopy is one of the investigational techniques which rely on lip prints for human identification based on the anatomy and morphology of lips. Fischer in 1902 described the concept of grooves on upper and lower lips for the first time and later in 1932, it was recommended by Locard. Lip prints are considered very significant for personal identification and also prove to be an analogous to fingerprints. Moreover, lip prints do not change with time, therefore they could be useful for identification of a person, whether dead or alive. Due to the characteristic feature of uniformity throughout the life, these can be used to establish the presence or absence of a person in crime, provided that the person has left the lip marks on exhibits such as glasswares, clothing, tissues, and napkins. The scarcity of literature on cheiloscopic studies for personal identification shows that little research has been carried out so far within the forensic community. Previous cheiloscopic studies show that no study has been carried out to individualize a deceased person, which can be utilized in mass disasters apart from criminal cases. Therefore, the present review divulges the importance of cheiloscopy in the identification of living as well as deceased persons, which could be an innovative technique in the history of forensic science.

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