Presentation Type

Poster

Title of Abstract

A study of cocaine use and the prevalence of levamisole among medical examiner fatalities in southwest Florida

Abstract

A five-year retrospective review was performed on 602 cocaine-related medical examiner case files within southwest Florida. The study revealed patterns and the magnitude of cocaine use in the area, as well as the prevalence and emergence of a recent adulterant, levamisole. The cases were reviewed for demographics, presence or absence of levamisole, manner of death and location by county. 148 female and 454 male cases showed evidence of cocaine use (by the presence of cocaine or its metabolite, benzoylecgonine, in the body) as early as three days prior to death. The cases displayed an average age of 37.9 ± 12 years while all cases ranged from 14 to 81 years of age. Of the 602 cases, 69 were positive for levamisole present in blood and/or urine. These results allow us to better understand cocaine use in this region of southwest Florida and the emergence and prevalence of levamisole.

Categories

Social Sciences

Research Type

Thesis

Mentor Information

Dr. Russell S.Vega

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A study of cocaine use and the prevalence of levamisole among medical examiner fatalities in southwest Florida

A five-year retrospective review was performed on 602 cocaine-related medical examiner case files within southwest Florida. The study revealed patterns and the magnitude of cocaine use in the area, as well as the prevalence and emergence of a recent adulterant, levamisole. The cases were reviewed for demographics, presence or absence of levamisole, manner of death and location by county. 148 female and 454 male cases showed evidence of cocaine use (by the presence of cocaine or its metabolite, benzoylecgonine, in the body) as early as three days prior to death. The cases displayed an average age of 37.9 ± 12 years while all cases ranged from 14 to 81 years of age. Of the 602 cases, 69 were positive for levamisole present in blood and/or urine. These results allow us to better understand cocaine use in this region of southwest Florida and the emergence and prevalence of levamisole.