Forensic Toxicology: Medico-Legal Case Studies

Kalipatnapu N. Rao

February 23, 2012 by CRC Press
Reference - 289 Pages - 8 B/W Illustrations
ISBN 9781439866818 - CAT# K12995


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    • Uses a case-oriented approach to show medico-legal aspects of toxicological analysis
    • Includes civil and criminal cases addressing the unusual as well as the typical
    • Provides techniques for writing reports and testifying at deposition and in court
    • Presents background information on clinical laboratories and the U.S. court system


    Modern technology using state-of-the-art equipment can now identify almost any toxin relevant to a legal issue. Techniques include gas chromatography, mass spectrometry, high-pressure liquid chromatography, and the combination of these methods. Forensic Toxicology: Medico-legal Case Studies demonstrates how the science of forensic toxicology acts as a bridge between medicine and law. Tracking the progression of toxicology findings from the laboratory to the courtroom, it prepares practicing toxicologists to write reports and testify at depositions and in court.

    The book explains the organization of clinical laboratories and includes sections on accreditation, quality control, method validation, and other critical topics. It provides an overview of the U.S. legal system, describes the process of writing a toxicology report, and offers techniques for deposition and courtroom testimony.

    Covering a broad range of topics, the book offers detailed analysis of situations ranging from the rare and unusual to those that toxicologists most often confront, including:

    • Determining serum/blood ethanol levels
    • Ethylene glycol poisoning
    • Plant and animal toxins
    • Alcohol intoxication and breathalyzer tests
    • Synergistic effects of alcohol and drugs
    • Prescription drug overdose
    • Toxic torts
    • Workers’ compensation issues

    Written in an accessible and well-organized style, this volume is an essential guide for forensic toxicologists at all levels who need to understand how to best present the science of toxicology in the forensic arena.