International Journal of Legal Medicine

, Volume 133, Issue 1, pp 217–229 | Cite as

Advancing estimation of chronological age by utilizing available evidence based on two radiographical methods

  • Øyvind BlekaEmail author
  • Torbjørn Wisløff
  • Pål Skage Dahlberg
  • Veslemøy Rolseth
  • Thore Egeland
Original Article


This paper describes a strategy for estimating chronological age of individuals based on age indicators of X-ray of the hand and the third molar tooth. The great majority of studies in the field provide group-wise data of different formats, which makes them difficult to compare and utilize in a model. In this paper, we have provided a framework to utilize different types of data formats to build a common model for estimating chronological age. We used transition analysis to describe the relationship between the age indicators and chronological age. Further, likelihood ratio weight of evidence and posterior distribution of chronological age were used to model the distribution of chronological age given the observed age indicators. Being able to utilize such a large amount of data, with different data formats, from different studies, as presented in this paper improves previous age estimation methods.


Age estimation Bayesian inference Likelihood ratio Demirjian’s Greulich and Pyle 



We thank Jayakumar Jayaraman, Simon Camilleri, Rick R. van Rijn, Marco Tisè, Eugénia Cunha, and Abdul Mueed Zafar for providing data and Peter Gill for proofreading. We also want to thank the reviewers for their useful comments.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

414_2018_1848_MOESM1_ESM.docx (4.2 mb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 4343 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Forensic SciencesOslo University HospitalOsloNorway
  2. 2.Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology and ModellingNorwegian Institute of Public HealthOsloNorway
  3. 3.Department of Health Management and Health EconomicsUniversity of OsloOsloNorway
  4. 4.Norwegian University of Life SciencesÅsNorway

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