The best evidence provided in the literature worldwide suggests the importance of harmonizing the investigation in drug-related fatalities. In this study, the application of a multidisciplinary approach in eight cases of drug-related deaths is presented. Although death scene findings could be highly suggestive of drug intoxication, external examination and toxicological screening test alone are insufficient. There are several variables, and it is not always easy to give the proper interpretation of the drug detection. A complete autopsy is necessary to correctly complete organ and tissues sampling for further histological and toxicological studies and obtain body fluids. The use of peripheral blood is recommended to avoid artifacts. The collection of many specimens is warranted to get more responses. The sampling aims to provide a picture of the distribution of the substance in the body. The sample and the selection of the drugs and the matrices to investigate are case-dependent. The presented diagnostic algorithm provides the coroner with all the elements to investigate drug-related deaths and cooperate with toxicologists. Toxicological forensic diagnosis is still extremely heterogeneous in regional and national contexts. Funding for method development, research, networking, facilities, and technologies improvement is mandatory to standardize the toxicological investigation.

Antonina Argo, S.Z. (2022). A Forensic Diagnostic Algorithm for Drug-Related Deaths: A Case Series. TOXICS, 10(1), 1-16 [10.3390/toxics10040152].

A Forensic Diagnostic Algorithm for Drug-Related Deaths: A Case Series

Antonina Argo
Primo
Methodology
;
Stefania Zerbo
Secondo
;
Roberto Buscemi
Investigation
;
Giuseppe Davide Albano
Penultimo
Methodology
;
2022-03-22

Abstract

The best evidence provided in the literature worldwide suggests the importance of harmonizing the investigation in drug-related fatalities. In this study, the application of a multidisciplinary approach in eight cases of drug-related deaths is presented. Although death scene findings could be highly suggestive of drug intoxication, external examination and toxicological screening test alone are insufficient. There are several variables, and it is not always easy to give the proper interpretation of the drug detection. A complete autopsy is necessary to correctly complete organ and tissues sampling for further histological and toxicological studies and obtain body fluids. The use of peripheral blood is recommended to avoid artifacts. The collection of many specimens is warranted to get more responses. The sampling aims to provide a picture of the distribution of the substance in the body. The sample and the selection of the drugs and the matrices to investigate are case-dependent. The presented diagnostic algorithm provides the coroner with all the elements to investigate drug-related deaths and cooperate with toxicologists. Toxicological forensic diagnosis is still extremely heterogeneous in regional and national contexts. Funding for method development, research, networking, facilities, and technologies improvement is mandatory to standardize the toxicological investigation.
22-mar-2022
Settore MED/43 - Medicina Legale
Settore BIO/14 - Farmacologia
Settore MED/05 - Patologia Clinica
Antonina Argo, S.Z. (2022). A Forensic Diagnostic Algorithm for Drug-Related Deaths: A Case Series. TOXICS, 10(1), 1-16 [10.3390/toxics10040152].
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10447/548691
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