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Cocaine-related deaths: an enigma still under investigation

Bertol, Elisabetta and Trignano, Claudia and Di Milia, Maria Grazia and Di Padua, Marianna and Mari, Francesco (2008) Cocaine-related deaths: an enigma still under investigation. Forensic Science International, Vol. 176 (2-3), p. 121-123. ISSN 0379-0738. Article.

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DOI: 10.1016/j.forsciint.2007.07.011


In recent years there has been an increase interest in cocaine-related death reflecting the rising trend in cocaine use in Europe. Nevertheless is still now very difficult to attribute a death to cocaine. We can affirm that cocaine can be responsible for the cause of death only when there is a reasonably complete understanding of the circumstances or facts surrounding the death. Isolated blood cocaine levels are not enough to assess lethality, should be always considered and evaluated in relation to concentrations of cocaine and benzoylecgonine concentrations in body tissue compartments, especially in brain and blood.
We have reanalyzed all of our cocaine-related case from 1990 to 2005, applying the methodology used by Spielher and Reed over 30 years ago. Our aim was to try to validate this model and verify its applicability and effectiveness after 20 years.

Item Type:Article
ID Code:1989
Uncontrolled Keywords:Cocaine, cause of death, cocaine-related cases
Subjects:Area 06 - Scienze mediche > MED/43 Medicina legale
Divisions:001 Università di Sassari > 03 Istituti > Medicina legale e medicina del lavoro
Publisher:Elsevier Ireland
Deposited On:18 Aug 2009 10:06

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